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The Way We Were (1973)

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

Director:

Sydney Pollack

Writer:

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

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Barbra Streisand ... Katie
Robert Redford ... Hubbell
Bradford Dillman ... J. J.
Lois Chiles ... Carol Ann
Patrick O'Neal ... George Bissinger
Viveca Lindfors ... Paula Reisner
Allyn Ann McLerie ... Rhea Edwards
Murray Hamilton ... Brooks Carpenter
Herb Edelman ... Bill Verso
Diana Ewing ... Vicki Bissinger
Sally Kirkland ... Pony Dunbar
Marcia Mae Jones ... Peggy Vanderbilt
Don Keefer ... Actor
George Gaynes ... El Morocco Captain
Eric Boles Eric Boles ... Army Corporal
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Storyline

The often unlikely joint lives of Katie Morosky and Hubbell Gardiner from the late 1930s to the late 1950s is presented, over which time, they are, in no particular order, strangers, acquaintances, friends, best friends, lovers and adversaries. The unlikely nature of their relationship is due to their fundamental differences, where she is Jewish and passionate about her political activism both in political freedoms and Marxism to an extreme where she takes life a little too seriously, while he is the golden boy WASP, being afforded the privileges in life because of his background but who on the most part is able to capitalize on those privileges. Their lives are shown in four general time periods, in chronological order when they attend the same college, their time in New York City during WWII, his life as a Hollywood screenwriter post-war, and his life as a writer for a New York based live television show. It is during college that Hubbell finds his voice in life as a writer, and ... Written by Huggo

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Taglines:

Some memories last forever. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | French

Release Date:

19 October 1973 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Nuestros años felices See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$49,919,870, 31 December 1974
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor) (uncredited)

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The blue zebra-skin stripe pattern of the fabric in the booths at the Club El Morocco were an authentic reproduction of the decor of the nightclub, for which it was famous. See more »

Goofs

In the final scene where Katie and Hubbell meet in front of the Plaza Hotel, modern NYC street lamps (of a type not introduced until the 1960s) are visible in the background. See more »

Quotes

Hubbell Gardner: People are more important than their principles.
Katie Morosky Gardner: People ARE their principles.
See more »

Connections

Featured in The Directors: The Films of Sydney Pollack (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

Wrap Your Troubles In Dreams (And Dream Your Troubles Away)
(1931) (uncredited)
Music by Harry Barris
Played as dance music at the El Morocco
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
The best film romance for adult audiences
20 April 2006 | by robb_772See all my reviews

As stated many times before, THE WAY WE WERE is one of only a handful of romantic blockbusters to actually feature an intelligent script and complex characters. Writer Arthur Luarents' based his screenplay (and subsequent novel) on girl he knew in college, who fought for liberal (and sometimes communist) causes. Three decades after it's release, THE WAY WE WERE remains one of the few cinematic depictions of the Red Scare that swept America in the forties and fifties; the backdrop of which lends the surrounding love story greater potency and depth. The film was a surprise box office smash when originally released, and became the fifth-highest grossing film of 1973 and was instantly embraced as a classic.

Katie Morosky is a character that Barbra Streisand born play, and she delivers on all accounts. Fierce and determined, yet vulnerable and self-conscious, Katie is a tricky character and Streisand inhabits her so deeply that she seems nothing less than completely believable. Justifiably nominated for a Best Actress Oscar, she inexplicably lost to Glenda Jackson's shrill performance in the barely remembered A TOUCH OF CLASS. This was clearly a major blunder on the side of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Robert Redford, who had actually turned down the role twice before director and friend Sydney Pollack talked him into taking the part, displays some of the best reflective acting ever seen on the big screen and effectively brings forth the dark side of being stereotyped as the All-American golden boy (although Redford did not receive an Oscar nod for playing Hubbell in this film, he was nominated for Best Actor that same year for his light comedic performance in THE STING).

THE WAY WE WERE is different from most romances in that it is not death, feuding families, or any other societal phenomena that directly tear the couple apart. Katie and Hubbell are simply passionate individuals with highly volatile, and contrasting, ideologies; the conflict of which is expressed in several brilliantly written and acted scenes that shimmer with the type of intelligence and honesty that is rarely seen in cinema today. The film's enduring popular success with the mass audience may very well be due to the magnetic chemistry between Streisand and Redford, the gorgeous cinematography, and the strong directorial hand supplied by Pollack. However, it is the complexity of the romance with politics and the strong characterizations by both leads that continues to make THE WAY WE WERE the best love story for adults.


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