7.2/10
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30 user 4 critic

The Hard Way (1943)

Approved | | Drama, Musical, Romance | 20 February 1943 (USA)
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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Writers:

(screen play), (screen play)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Paul Collins
...
Katherine 'Katie' Blaine
...
Albert Runkel
...
Lily Emery
...
Ice Cream Parlor Waitress
...
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:

Sisters face to face...one burning with love...the other seething with hatred! A story of crushing power! 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:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Bette Davis was originally the first choice for the role of Helen Chernin but turned it down. Upon seeing the finished product, however, she mused, "How did I let that one get away?" See more »

Goofs

Near the end, when Paul walks in to see Helen and Katie (after Katie told Helen she and Paul were to be married), the shot goes from the sisters facing each other to standing shoulder to shoulder back to facing each other. See more »

Quotes

Katherine 'Katie' Blaine: [Looking in the mirror at her new, very sexy dress] Boy, if I showed up in Greenhill wearing this, they'd call out the fire department!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in American Me (1992) See more »

Soundtracks

Thru the Courtesy of Love
(uncredited)
Music by M.K. Jerome (credited)
Played on piano when Helen and Katie arrive at the Shagrue party
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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