Getting Straight (1970)

R  |   |  Comedy, Drama, Romance  |  13 May 1970 (USA)
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A Vietnam vet and former social radical is conflicted by his desire to become a teacher and his sympathy with anti-establishment student protests.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Harry Bailey
Dr. Edward Willhunt
Max Julien ...
Dr. Kasper
Jon Lormer ...
William Bramley ...
Wade Linden
Judy Kramer
Richard Anders ...
Dr. Greengrass
Brenda Sykes ...
Jenny Sullivan ...


Harry Bailey has returned from Vietnam and returns to college to earn his masters degree so he can teach English. He is considered a hero among the radical student body, but still sees the absurdity on both sides of the fence. He contends with the reactionary administration and the impetuous, often futile objectives of the restless students. He acts as a mediator between the two feuding bodies. On top of everything else, his girlfriend Jan wants to marry him and live a life in the suburbs. He is cornered and finally lets loose at his own masters degree dissertation meeting, just as the latest protest heats up. Written by thustlebird

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


America's children lay it on the line.


Comedy | Drama | Romance


R | See all certifications »




Release Date:

13 May 1970 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Camino recto  »

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Did You Know?


First of two collaborations of director Richard Rush and screenwriter Robert Kaufman with the second being about four years later with Freebie and the Bean (1974). See more »


Judy Kramer: Harry, you lied to me. You told me you were gonna go to that free speech meeting!
Harry Bailey: No, *you* lied to me. You told me there was gonna be free food.
Judy Kramer: Harry, what happened? you used to be the great rebel! The great leader. What are you afraid of?
Harry Bailey: Of being late for class.
Judy Kramer: Harry, in a few months the entire military industrial complex is going to have us in concentration camps in Arizona!
Harry Bailey: Hey, Judy, don't knock Arizona. It has the least incidence of lung cancer, homosexuality and crabs.
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Crazy Credits

A film by the organization See more »


Referenced in The Sinister Saga of Making 'The Stunt Man' (2000) See more »


Ain't No Way
Written by Dan Peyton and Marty Kaniger
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User Reviews

12 April 2000 | by (Hastings,England) – See all my reviews

While it would be easy for many to catagorize "Getting Straight" as a period film,it nonetheless is a timeless homage to those poor souls who are casual victims of circumstance.

From the beginning of the movie we see as protagonist Harry Bailey is set upon by all of his much younger and very politically naive fellow college students who think that if only Harry would join up with them,then their causes of the moment would be complete.It doesn't dawn upon these people that Harry is much older,with a completely different set of priorities than he had before going off to fight in the Vietnam war.

At this time in Harrys life,he wants to finish his masters degree in order to be given a teaching credential.Once he gets this,he can go about the business of molding future system challengers and left-wing banner carriers.

The only thing that stands in his way is his own naivite and egalitarian mind-set that he has reserved for all but himself.

"Getting Straight" shows us all the inevitable complications of fence-sitting and ignoring our potential in life.

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