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The Way We Were (1973)

PG  |   |  Drama, Romance  |  19 October 1973 (USA)
7.1
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 14,540 users  
Reviews: 95 user | 31 critic

Two desperate people have a wonderful romance, but their political views and convictions drive them apart.

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Title: The Way We Were (1973)

The Way We Were (1973) on IMDb 7.1/10

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Won 2 Oscars. Another 5 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

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Storyline

The movie begins with the Katie (Barbra Streisand) running into Hubbell Gardner, an All-American popular jock she went to college with, some time after World War II. Though some other summaries claim it's been about 20 years, that is not really the case. It's probably been more like 10 years since college and Hubbell has written his first novel and later joined the navy while Katie continues to work hard and remains very much involved in the grassroots level of politics. Katie who had a crush on Hubbell back in college is still very attracted to him and soon the two start an "on again off again" relationship. Eventually Katie ends up giving up her voice and her interest in politics in order to hold on to Hubbell and they get married. However when Hubbell begins to compromise his literary talent by abandoning his novel writing for writing Screenplays for Hollywood their marriage begins its downfall. When the government begins its witch-hunt for communists among Hollywood writers and ... Written by bberry

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Everything seemed so important then .. even love! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

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Release Date:

19 October 1973 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Nuestros años felices  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Viveca Lindfors appears in Creepshow (1982), while Lois Chiles appears in Creepshow 2 (1987). See more »

Goofs

Near the beginning of the movie Hubble is dancing with Katie you can see her pearl ring on her finger go from the pearl centered on her ring finger to the ring turned and the pearl is down next to her little finger and then the pearl is centered again on her finger. It also looks like the ring changes size from fitting her snuggly to being loose then fitting snuggly again. See more »

Quotes

Katie Morosky Gardner: You'll never find anyone as good for you as I am, to believe in you as much as I do or love you as much!
Hubbell Gardner: I know that.
Katie Morosky Gardner: Well then, why?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Facts of Life: The Way We Were: Part 2 (1984) See more »

Soundtracks

Paper Doll
(1915) (uncredited)
Written by Johnny Black
Played on piano and sung by all at a party
Also played in the score a bit
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Despite some faults, it's still pretty good
19 July 2005 | by (Milwaukee, WI) – See all my reviews

The theme of a golden boy falling for a girl from "another world", be it social class, the "wrong side of the tracks" or fill in your cliché here, is one that goes back to the silent film era. One of the most famous examples is Sydney Pollack's 1973 film "The Way We Were". Set from the 1930's through the 1950's, Barbra Streisand plays Katie, an outspoken member of the Communist party and campus activist who does not have anything handed to her; she works two and sometimes three jobs in order to pay for her living and college tuition. Hubble (Redford) is your typical aforementioned golden boy, a "big man on campus" who indulges in sports, debutantes and all-around good times. The two know each other from the diner Katie works at (he being the patron) and at one point before graduation, briefly bond over their shared passion for writing. Cut to a few years in the future and Katie encounters Hubble at a bar. Hubble is in the armed forces and Katie is characteristically working a couple of jobs while volunteering for various social causes. After a night of drunken sex (Hubble being the drunken one) they embark on an unlikely relationship that spans over a decade and includes a move to California (when Hubble becomes a screenwriter in Hollywood) and the conception of one child. They are happy, but realize that regardless of their desire, they can't completely cross social lines and certainly can't change one another, particularly Katie's ever-ferocious dedication to social causes; a fight that becomes exponentially heated during McCarthy's Red Scare. The two have to decide whether they can sustain enough raw emotion for one another to persevere over everything else that is stacked up against them.

There are several things about "The Way We Were" that require suspension of disbelief (the fact that despite never having had much contact with one another that after one night of drunken lust and an awkward "morning after" being enough to kick start a relationship the magnitude of theirs is the first thing that comes to mind) but the bottom line is that it really is a well-written, well-directed and well-acted film. The two principal characters are full and complex, regardless of whether we are talking about the socially conscience Katie or the socially acceptable Hubble. I suspect they somewhat were written with the intent of familiarity for the purpose of effectiveness, and if this is true, it worked on me. The era in which these two characters were set was a very interesting time in American history, and the characters' actions during these times created some compelling cinema, particularly when it touched on the Red Scare.

But who am I fooling? The main reason people watch this movie, whether for the first time or for the fiftieth is for the doomed romance, and Streisand and Redford deliver in spades. "The Way We Were" was written for Streisand, (something that cause Redford to turn down the part at first, because he knew the film was going to be hers) and her portrayal of Katie is excellent. There are so many perceptions of Streisand nowadays (some of them correct, to be sure) that it's easy to forget that she really does have some serious acting chops, and she exhibits them to full effect here. I also happened to learn that the soft filtered lens thing with her didn't just start with her later movies, for whatever reason she was filmed with that lens more often than not here, but that didn't do anything more than slightly distract me because I couldn't help but chuckle. Redford gives a typical solid performance as well, though his initial doubts about taking the role turned out to be valid; he is not the dynamic figure in the film. However, his character is a strong one and Redford does a good job.

I don't know if Pollack knew he was creating a screen classic when he directed "The Way We Were" but he did make a very good film. If you can make it past some major melodrama and some plot holes (what was the deal with their child?) watch this film, and just sit back and appreciate it for what it is – a chick flick that guys don't have to feel ashamed watching. 7/10 --Shelly


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