Harry Morgan and his alcoholic sidekick, Eddie, are based on the island of Martinique and crew a boat available for hire.
However, since the second world war is happening around them business is not what it could be and after a customer who owes them a large sum fails to pay they are forced against their better judgement to violate their preferred neutrality and to take a job for the resistance transporting a fugitive on the run from the Nazis to Martinique.
Through all this runs the stormy relationship between Morgan and Marie "Slim" Browning, a resistance sympathizer and the sassy singer in the club where Morgan spends most of his days.
Humphrey Bogart ... Harry 'Steve' Morgan
Walter Brennan ... Eddie
Lauren Bacall ... Marie 'Slim' Browning
Dolores Moran ... Mme. Hellene de Bursac
Hoagy Carmichael ... Cricket
Sheldon Leonard ... Lt. Coyo
Walter Szurovy ... Paul de Bursac (as Walter Molnar)
Marcel Dalio ... Gerard (Frenchy)
Walter Sande ... Johnson, fishing customer
Dan Seymour ... Capt. M. Renard
Aldo Nadi ... Renard's bodyguard
Director: Howard Hawks
Codecs: XVid / MP3
This film has nothing to do with the Ernest Hemingway's book, which is not one of his best novels. Howard Hawks took a big gamble in trying to have the great Hemingway write the screen treatment, but Papa didn't comply with the request. Instead, Mr. Hawks hired two other writers to work on the scenario for this movie, William Faulkner and Jules Furthman, not too shabby a combination! Mr. Hawks had an enormous talent for giving the American public films that were entertaining, as well as well crafted. Mr. Hawks is responsible for discovering Lauren Bacall, a young model from New York with no experience in the cinema. Well, Mr. Hawk's instinct paid handsomely as Lauren Bacall went to have a fabulous career of her own.
This film is interesting as well, for it marked the beginning of the romance between Mr. Bogart and Ms. Bacall. Their love is there in front of the viewers to see. This movie shows us a Bogey with a heart. He was an actor that excelled in this type of picture and under Mr. Hawks's direction, his Capt. Morgan makes a remarkable impression.
The story has all the right ingredients to keep us interested in what is going on with all these characters in Martinique. World War II makes a detour and comes to the island.
The cast for this movie is first rate. Humphrey Bogart is a tough Capt. Morgan who falls head over heels for young and lovely "Slim" Browning, a mysterious young woman who loves adventure. Ms. Bacall has a way to sing a song that makes it unique because of her sense of style. Both these stars smolder the screen in their love scenes.
Walter Brennan plays Eddie, the drunken sailor that helps Morgan take tourists on fishing junkets. Marcel Dalio, is Frenchy, the owner of the local hotel; he is the one responsible for putting Morgan in touch with the partisans operating in the island. Dolores Moran and Walter Szurovy are the De Bursac, who are smuggled into the island by Morgan, at his own risk; they are sought by the local branch of the Gestapo.
Hoagy Carmichael, the great musician puts an appearance as Cricket, a pianist that entertains at the hotel lounge. The three musical numbers are done flawlessly. Mr. Carmichael's rendition of "Hong Kong blues" stays in one's mind forever. Also we hear two other of his songs, "Am I blue?", and a sultry rendition by Lauren Bacall of his hit, "How little we know". Hearing sung by Bacall makes any other interpretation superfluous.
This is a film to see to enjoy great acting under the magnificent direction of Howard Hawks.
Lauren Bacall, who gave men the license to whistle, was blessed by nature with two advantages: the personality of a buddy and the look of a Femme Fatale...
This combination initially took the only 19-years-old actress to the top with her first two films – 'To Have and Have Not' and 'The Big Sleep' – scoring a success even the deadpan expressions of a Buster Keaton could not undermine...
It helped, of course, to be co-starred in them with Humphrey Bogart who fell in love with her during shooting, and to have Howard Hawks, who deliberately set out to prove that he could make her a star, directing her every move in the same totally controlled way Joseph Von Sternberg had done with Marlene Dietrich...
'To Have and Have Not' is an almost unrecognizable adaptation of the Hemingway novel... The Rick character again appears, though with a new name... The film is a fairly routinely adventure, with a plot that isn't all that interesting, and with a frequently laughable dialog, but it sparks into life when Bogart and the leading blonde, with whom he is deeply in love and to whom he will later be married, appear...
The girl is Lauren Bacall, in her first movie... Cool, smooth, and gorgeous, she sets the screen on fire from her first entrance... She was a new kind of heroine...
Opposite Bogart she was colorful and believable... She had no illusions about herself... She was used to getting by, making out as best she could... She wanted Bogey and she let him know it... She offers herself to him, bravely and without shame: ' You know you don't have to act with me, Steve. You don't have to say anything and you don't have to do anything. Not a thing. Oh, maybe just whistle. (She opens his door and pauses.) You know how to whistle, don't you, Steve? You just put your lips together - and blow.'
With the effective use of her sexy, sultry, speaking voice and her confident eyes, Howard Hawks creates a new screen image, and one of the most sizzling yet sexual propositions on film...
Lauren Bacall has become heir to our memories of the truly memorable star of the 1940s, and, in her own way, one of them...
* Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall fell in love during production. Director Howard Hawks afterward said that it was actually Bacall's character Marie that Bogart had fallen for, "so she had to keep playing it the rest of her life." However, it has also been said that Hawks - who was something of a womanizer, and who had a fling with Dolores Moran during the shooting of the film - was jealous and frustrated that Bacall had fallen for Bogart and not for Hawks himself.
* The film debut of Lauren Bacall.
* Ernest Hemingway had bet Howard Hawks that Hawks couldn't film this novel. Hawks did it by deleting most of the story, including the class references that would justify the title, and shifting to an earlier point in the lives of the lead characters.
* The setting was shifted to Martinique because the Office of Inter-American Affairs would not have allowed export of a film showing smuggling and insurrection in Cuba.
* Andy Williams was hired to dub Lauren Bacall's singing "How Little We Know", but director Howard Hawks decided to go with Bacall.
* The only film to date (2000) based on a novel by a Nobel Prize-winning author (Ernest Hemingway) to have its screenplay co-written by another Nobel Prize-winning author (William Faulkner).
* The most famous scene in To Have and Have Not (1944) is undoubtedly the "you know how to whistle" dialog sequence. It was not written by Ernest Hemingway, ' Jules Furthman' or William Faulkner, but by Howard Hawks. Hawks wrote the scene as a screen test for Bacall, with no real intention that it would necessarily end up in the film. The test was shot with Warner Bros. contract player John Ridgely acting opposite Bacall. The Warners staff, of course, agreed to star Bacall in the film based on the test, and Hawks thought the scene was so strong he asked Faulkner to work it into one of his later drafts of the shooting script.
* The screenplay was rewritten to boost Slim's role to take advantage of the public interest in the real life romance between Lauren Bacall and Humphrey Bogart.
* The movie's line "You know how to whistle, don't you, Steve? You just put your lips together and blow." was voted as the #34 movie quote by the American Film Institute (out of 100).
* The movie's line "You know how to whistle, don't you, Steve? You just put your lips together and blow." was voted as the #77 of "The 100 Greatest Movie Lines" by Premiere in 2007.
* Although the source novel and the script were written by 2 Nobel Prize winners (Ernest Hemingway and William Faulkner), most of the dialog was actually improvised by the cast.
* Hoagy Carmichael played most of his scenes with a matchstick in his teeth. Seeing this on the set at the start of shooting, Humphrey Bogart gave kudos to Carmichael, telling him that the matchstick was a nice touch and would make him stand out in the film. Carmichael was surprised afterward to see a scene being filmed with Bogart and Walter Brennan, both of them chewing matchsticks throughout the shot. They finally revealed that they were having a bit of fun at Hoagy's expense.
* Dolores Moran was originally scripted to be the lead actress and Humphrey Bogart's romantic interest, but her role was shrunk to make room for Lauren Bacall.