Watch on film: Casablanca
Despite Humphrey Bogart’s reputation as an actor, a celebrity and a style icon of the highest order, it may just be enough to describe him as one of the giants of Hollywood’s Golden Era. ‘Bogie’ as a man, is quite incomparable in today’s terms. Imagine the charisma of George Clooney, the looks of Richard Gere and the cool and calm nature of Matthew McConaughey… alright, alright, alright.
“Here’s looking at you, kid,” is the immortal line he will utter a thousand times through the endless viewings of his most known work, Casablanca, as it comfortably sits in the pantheon of cinematic classics.
Bogart stars alongside Paul Henreid and a twenty-something Ingrid Bergman in the Second World War film that blends action, romance and propaganda against the backdrop of the north African city filled with crooks, spies and refugees desperate to reach the United States. It tells of an intriguing love triangle between three idealists caught in the midst of a war that upended the lives of millions.
As watch fans, there is another reason to re-watch Casablanca. Throughout the movie Bogie’s character, Rick Blaine, an American expat who owns a swanky nightclub, is seen wearing an elegant Longines Evidenza timepiece. As it turns out, this classy tonneau-shaped, 1920s-inspired piece was no mere film prop — it was actually owned by Bogart himself. The gilt case was even inscribed with his initials.
The classic wristwatch, with clear Art Deco inspiration, was powered by a L25.17 movement and combined a pink gold dial with yellow gold Arabic numerals.
The design would prove to be so timeless that the collection still exists 76 years on. To coin a line from the film, Longines and the Evidenza (below) set out to be “the beginning of a beautiful friendship”, and it certainly has proved to be.