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The Hasty Heart (1949)

It's 1945, Burma, the day the war is over! For many this means they've survived and will be going home. But not for everyone. A Scottish soldier, Corporal Lachlan "Lachie" MacLachlan is the... See full summary »

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(screenplay) (as Ranald Macdougall), (play)
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 4 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Lachie
...
Lt. Col. Dunn
...
Tommy (as Howard Marion Crawford)
Ralph Michael ...
Kiwi
Orlando Martins ...
Blossom
John Sherman ...
Digger
Alfie Bass ...
Orderly
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Storyline

It's 1945, Burma, the day the war is over! For many this means they've survived and will be going home. But not for everyone. A Scottish soldier, Corporal Lachlan "Lachie" MacLachlan is the victim of a wound to the lower back on this day. He's moved to a M.A.S.H. unit and undergoes surgery. As time goes by he begins to recover and watches, in dismay as soldiers pack up and head for home. The doctors have told him he needs to remain "for observation". The Colonel takes Sister Parker, the unit head nurse, into his confidence and tells her that the real reason Cpl. MacLachlan can't go home is because the wound he sustained destroyed one of his kidneys and the other one is defective and will shut down in three to four weeks. He asks her to put Lachlan up with some other soldiers she has waiting to go home so that he can spend his last days with friends. But Cpl. MacLachlan wants nothing to do with friends and prefers his own privacy to "idle chat". He's a hard nut to crack and their work ... Written by McGinty <McGinty@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

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Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

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Language:

Release Date:

2 December 1949 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Hasty Heart  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Color:

(archive footage)|

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When Lachie asks Yank what he's going to do after the war, Yank replies that he's going back to "...a little place on the Rock River, Dixon, Illinois." This is actor Ronald Reagan's actual boyhood home. See more »

Quotes

[referring to his purchase of a farm back in Scotland]
Cpl. Lachlan 'Lachie' MacLachlan: I put my money to better use. It's in Scotland - in the earth.
Yank: I knew it! He's got it buried in a tin can!
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Connections

Referenced in Sykes: Television Film (1978) See more »

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User Reviews

Reagan Shines
7 November 2001 | by (brighton, ma) – See all my reviews

As a fan of neither soap operas nor Ronald Reagan I find myself utterly captivated by the movie of The Hasty Heart, a popular play of the postwar years, which was filmed in England by Warner Brothers. Richard Todd plays Lachy, a proud, somewhat obnoxious Scotsman who is assigned to a Burmese hospital, where he is presumably recovering from surgery but in fact dying, a fact kept from him by the medical staff. The other patients are told to go easy on the fellow, to make friends with him, which they do, with considerable opposition from Lachy himself, who did not up to this time have friends. There is some excellent dialogue along the way, as the various patients and staff members attempt to soften up this hard case, which in the end they do. The acting, of Richard Todd, as Lachy, and Patricia Neal, as the nurse he develops what I guess one would call a crush on, is quite good, but what makes the film somewhat of a revelation is the truly excellent performance of none other than Ronald Reagan, as Yank, the one American among the patients, and nobody's fool. Reagan does not play his part for charm. Yank is in his way as tough as Lachy, only he accepts life and Lachy doesn't. He too has a hard streak, but also compassion; and he is never soft. The interaction between the astringent Yank and everyone else is, thanks to Mr. Reagan, far and above the liveliest part of the film, which depending on one's mood can be either inspiring, in a gentle sort of way, or vaguely depressing, given its subject matter. This is a fine example of a well-made play of the sort its author, John Patrick, was an expert at. One doesn't see too many of them around these days, as they have gone out of fashion, as the art of the drama has, for good or ill, moved on. After seeing this movie one might have second thoughts about the notion that the theatre has, in the last half-century, moved on to better things.


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