The surprising history of the wolf-whistle


You might not have seen To Have and Have Not – a romantic thriller from 1944 in which Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall smoulder over each other for 90 minutes – but you’ll know its most famous scene. It starts with the pair trading barbs until Bacall suddenly leans in and kisses Bogart.

“What’d you do that for?” Bogart says, a dumb smile across his face. “I’ve been wondering whether I’d like it,” Bacall shoots back.

She then gets up to leave. “You know you don’t have to act with me, Steve,” she says. “You don’t have to say anything, and you don’t have to do anything. Not a thing…. Oh, maybe just whistle.”

She opens the door, but turns as if remembering something. “You do know how to whistle, don’t you, Steve? You just put your lips together, and blow.”

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Olivia Wilson
By Olivia Wilson


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