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The Hard Way (1943)

Approved  |   |  Drama, Musical, Romance  |  20 February 1943 (USA)
7.2
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 702 users  
Reviews: 26 user | 3 critic

Embittered, ambitious Helen Sherman sees an opportunity to escape her drab small-town life by becoming a 'stage mother' to her musically-talented younger sister.

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(screen play), (screen play), 1 more credit »
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Title: The Hard Way (1943)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Dennis Morgan ...
Paul Collins
...
Katherine 'Katie' Blaine
...
Albert Runkel
...
Lily Emery
Faye Emerson ...
Ice Cream Parlor Waitress
Paul Cavanagh ...
John 'Jack' Shagrue
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Storyline

Ambitious Helen Chernin (Ida Lupino) pushes her talented younger sister Katherine (Joan Leslie) into marriage with broken down song-and-dance man Albert Runkel (Jack Carson) so that the two women can leave the dirty steel town where they live. Runkel's partner Paul Collins (Dennis Morgan), however, sees through Helen's plan. Helen continues driving her sister's career and eventually Katherine becomes a star on Broadway, while Runkel and Collins' act flounders. Success soon goes to Katherine's head and she becomes a fast-living party girl. Time passes and Helen and Katherine run into Paul, now a successful band leader. He and Katherine soon fall in love. The two sisters eventually have a showdown on opening night of Katherine's latest show when Katherine discovers that Helen is also in love with Paul. Written by Daniel Bubbeo <dbubbeo@cmp.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

There are two sides to every story -- and every woman! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Musical | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 February 1943 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A nehéz út  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Per director Vincent Sherman, the film was actually based on dancer-actress Ginger Rogers' relationship with her quintessential stage-mother, Lela E. Rogers. See more »

Goofs

Near the end of the film Dennis Morgan takes a seat to see Joan Leslie's play. He is seated next to a young woman. The next time the camera cuts to him he is in the same seat, but sitting next to an older woman wearing completely different clothing. See more »

Quotes

Paul Collins: You feel good, don't you? Don't you ever wake up at night and say to yourself, 'Maybe there's something just a little poisonous about me?'
Mrs. Helen Chernen: Mind your business!
Paul Collins: [With thinly disguised contempt] You know, in a queer, crazy kind of a way I admire you. I like to watch you work. It's like watching the manuveurs of the atlantic Fleet... and after you've done something particularly mean and nasty, I'd like to take you in my arms and kiss you.
Mrs. Helen Chernen: [a little taken back] Hmmmp! That's a lovely unique. Is this ...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in American Me (1992) See more »

Soundtracks

About a Quarter to Nine
(1935) (uncredited)
Music by Harry Warren
Played on piano and danced by chorus girls at rehearsal
See more »

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User Reviews

Great film; surprising acting from Jack Carson
4 May 2000 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This was a terrific film. I was riveted as I watched the story unfold. Ida Lupino, fast becoming one of my favorites, was absolutely magnificent as the stage sister, a "Svengali" using her sibling to propel both of them out of poverty. No wonder I don't go to the movies much -- I'd rather stay home and watch performances such as Miss Lupino's!

I was a bit confused by the blossoming relationship between Leslie's and Morgan's characters (though they both gave noteworthy performances). It could have been built up more, since I thought I missed something when the relationship evolved to its resolution. A small flaw.

But the best part of the film was an unusually strong and moving performance from Jack Carson. He is known more for his comic relief (I hate comic relief!) roles in such films as "Mildred Pierce." Heres, Mr. Carson presented a three-dimensional character that you could not help but feel bad for. A pleasant surprise which only added to a must-see film.


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