Lindsay chose: Casablanca (1942)
Quite simply, there is no more beautiful an image captured on screen than a tearful Ilsa Lund in Casablanca. Soft focus, yes, but appropriately so. After all, it’s a tender moment. As if that wasn’t enough to win the prize, I love the close-ups of Bogie as he’s drowning his sorrows, agony in his eyes.
Alix chose: Sunset Boulevard (1950)
“All right, Mr. DeMille, I’m ready for my close-up.” Sunset Boulevard may be an obvious choice, seeing that this quote is one of the most famous classic film quotes, but it does precede a great close up. Why? Because there never really is a close up. As Norma Desmond approaches the camera she begins to blur and fade to grey, almost affirming to the viewer that Norma no longer has a place in film. While it may not be a beautiful, moving, soft focus close-up, it is definitely a scene you will not forget.
Claude Rains is the Star of the month on Turner Classic Movies, so it’s only fitting that we give our own salute to one of our favorite actors.
Name: William Claude Rains
Famous Roles: Sen. Joseph Paine in Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939), Capt. Louis Renault in Casablanca (1942), Job Skeffington in Mr. Skeffington (1944), Alexander Sebastian in Notorious (1946), Mr. Dryden in Lawrence of Arabia (1962).