Hard Country (1981) Poster


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I was in it!
andy19394 September 2014
This was filmed in Bakersfield. I was a cowboy extra in the bar scenes. We drank Lone Star beer until they ran out and would only let us pretend to drink when film was in the camera LOL. A good friend was the stand in for Kim Basinger. Made $70/day and had a ball. Because of this I have a Kevin Bacon number of 2! How many can say that? When not in the scene we all played poker in a tent and got pretty wasted on that Lone Star. They fed us if we worked over 6 hours I think. Good sack lunches. One take was at night and was a blast. They used the Basque Club on South Union to film in. They had it all decorated like a Texas honky tonk bar which was the setting of the movie. One scene was shot in a small restaurant in town. I went to see it but discovered I was on the cutting room floor.
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A worthwhile drama! Enjoy Jan's macho pathos in this...
robespierre914 June 2008
In the current days of CGI, it is rare to see movies like this nowadays!! This is a gritty, blue collar love-story with a lot of heart. I really enjoyed the atmosphere of this story - the country bars, the little apartment, the mobile-home lot, the fence factory. It's gritty and real- the dust, the wind, the empty Texas roads. Kim Basinger is truly delightful as Jodie. She's all charm, with her Georgia drawl in full swing. I am a huge Jan Michael Vincent fan, and this is one of his best roles! It's nice to see him in a more adult role. The heavy drinker side of his character comes naturally - obviously! But Jan always had a great underlying angst in all his characters. He always has a detached, macho pathos which he conveys with those eyes - just makes him fascinating to watch. He has great chemistry with Kim Basinger in this. He struggles with his job, his sleazy brother, his drinking, and Jodie's willfulness. It's a great role for him! This is a MUST SEE for any Jan or Kim fans out there!
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Everything but the bull
bkoganbing18 February 2013
Reading here that this film was held up in release for two years, someone must have thought it was going to be a turkey. Then when Urban Cowboy got released and did so well someone then decided we might have a good thing in the vaults. Watching Hard Country with its plot so very similar to Urban Cowboy I was thinking they've got everything here but the bull.

Jan-Michael Vincent and Kim Bassinger in her first big screen film are a pair of twenty somethings who are living in sin as Bassinger's mother tells her in no uncertain terms. Vincent's life consists of his construction job by day and going to the Stallion Bar at night to raise a little hell with his good old boy friends. And of course Bassinger goes along as a little Texas arm candy.

But Vincent doesn't see the change is coming with her and that Bassinger is starting to think there has to be more to life than this. Her itch for something better is cultivated by Tanya Tucker who is a friend who went on to Hollywood and Nashville and is now a country music star. She'd like to be a flight attendant, although back in those days they called them stewardesses. But Jan-Michael wants his woman home, barefoot and he's doing his best to see she becomes pregnant. And that meets with the approval of all his friends.

You can see already that Hard Country is along the lines of Urban Cowboy. I can't call it an imitation since it was made earlier, but maybe we can call it a prototype.

Like Urban Cowboy it has a nice country and western score. I do like Tanya Tucker singing her famous salute to the Lone Star State entitled simply Texas. Some other prominent roles are Darryl Hannah in one of her earliest roles as Bassinger's sister, Michael Parks as Vincent's brother and Gaillard Sartain one of Vincent's goofball buddies who gets himself with some nasty injuries for acting drunk and stupid.

This film might have been a good hit in Texas other than the fact it really Texas and Texans down something fierce. Hard Country is not a bad film, but Urban Cowboy is better.
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Texas life
lee_eisenberg5 July 2015
Kim Basinger made her feature film debut as a woman in a small town in a small town in Texas questioning her relationship with her redneck boyfriend. "Hard Country" strikes me as an attempt to look at the feminist movement. The movie DOES feature a lot of Texas stereotypes, although they're probably accurate. In the end, I thought that it did a good job showing the main character's desperation with her irresponsible boyfriend and lack of opportunities in this small town. And the soundtrack proves what should be well known by now: a lot of good music comes from the Lone Star State (it almost makes you forget that Texas is full of, well, Texans). And it should go without saying that Basinger looks mighty fine throughout the movie (as she always does).

Also starring are Jan-Michael Vincent, Michael Parks, Tanya Tucker, Daryl Hannah and Ted Neeley (Jesus in "Jesus Christ Superstar" and more recently a tracker in "Django Unchained").
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Great movie, well worth watching.
kiltapp18 December 2004
I found this movie very entertaining. Vincent is great, as well as Kim Basinger, I would even say awesome. The intensity through the whole picture, both regarding chemistry between actors and events, makes this 100 minutes well worth watching. Thanks to the intensity, even some of the more or less over the top Texas clichés becomes very interesting. And the environment is great as well. If I would say a couple of things about the minor good things, it would be the returning scenes with performances. They're great, but they're too many. Tanya Tucker even sings two full songs, making it partly look more like a musical than a motion picture. These are minor flaws though, and they're easily overlooked.
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Overlong country Texas flick that tries hard.
craze5 September 1999
This over-long Texas flick tries hard but unfortunately is rather dull in stretches. Very predictable ending. Basinger acquits herself well in her debut. There are a few nice moments and the Texas backdrop is pleasant enough. A lack of strong direction and drive and not enough charisma on the part of Jan-Michael Vincent are what cause the film to suffer.
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Thia is a great movie!!!!
kershawcoguard12 December 2005
This is one of the best movies I've had the pleasure of watching. It sorta reminds me of "Urban Cowboy" because a lot of the movie takes place at a honky tonk and the main characters in the movie likes to go there a lot. I liked the part where they pulled Johnny Bob's mobile home/worm farm out onto the highway and left it. Later on Johnny Bob does a belly whopper off the barroom table and winds up hurt. And that was one heckuva fight that Vicent got into with his mobile home selling brother. Vincent sure did have one sleazy brother when he was sitting in his office watching porno and then tried to seduce Vincent's girlfriend played by Kim Basinger. I don't know if Vincent got into that fight with his brother cause he was jealous of all the money that his brother had, or because he was messing with his girlfriend. I think Vincent's brother musta been greedy or something because his wife sure was gorgeous. So why woulda he wanta hit on Jodie(Basinger)? If this movie was made today and Vincent woulda tried to run outta on the runway to beg his girlfriend from leaving, he mighta got shot! Seriously, this was a good movie and I hope to get it on DVD!
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A nice slice of life drama
Woodyanders6 May 2010
Warning: Spoilers
Ambitious young Jodie (an excellent and appealing performance by the gorgeous Kim Basinger in her film debut) wants more out of life than her small Texas country town has to offer. Jodie realizes that in order to pursue her dreams she will have to leave Texas and move to the big city. However, her shiftless factory worker boyfriend Kyle (a fine portrayal by Jan-Michael Vincent) wants to stay in Texas. Director David Greene, working from a thoughtful and perceptive script by Michael Kanes, firmly grounds the compelling story in a totally plausible gritty blue collar reality and delivers a flavorsome evocation of the colorful downhome Texas setting. Moreover, Greene and Kane show genuine compassion and sensitivity towards the everyday characters and their wants and desires; the narrative makes a pertinent point about the compromises and sacrifices one has to make in order to get ahead in life, but thankfully never gets too sappy or melodramatic. This film further benefits from sturdy acting by a sound cast: Basinger and Vincent do sterling work in the lead roles, Tanya Tucker contributes a vibrant turn as sweet and successful country singer Caroline, plus there's able support from Michael Parks as Kyle's slick'n'sleazy well-to-do brother Royce, Gailard Sartain as rowdy good ol' boy Johnny Bob, Sierra Pecheur as Jodie's doting religious fanatic mother, Lewis Van Bergen as smarmy heel music producer Ransom, and Daryl Hannah as Jodie's brash and restless kid sister Loretta. Richard Moll has a neat bit part as a belligerent beer-guzzling redneck. Jimmie Haskell's twangy score hits the harmonic spot. The country music soundtrack is likewise quite tasty. Dennis Dalzell's polished cinematography also does the trick. A good little movie.
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One of Jan-Michael Vincent's Best Performances
imissnm0714 February 2010
Warning: Spoilers
I remember seeing this movie for the first time when I was in high school and wondering who that good looking cowboy was. This film evokes the whole feel of the '80's when Dallas was popular and a lot of people I knew wanted to move to Texas. Jan-Michael Vincent delivers a great performance as a back to the grindstone everyday blue-collar worker. Kim Bassinger does a great job in an early film role for her as Jodie, the disenchanted girlfriend of Kyle's. The film does have some great funny parts and lines. One of my favorite funny scenes is when Kyle asks the manager if he would like a pair of socks. I enjoyed Darryl Hannah's character as Jodie's inquisitive little sister. I think the plot hits home for a lot of people who fall into a mundane routine each day going to work and then try to bring some fun to their lives on Friday and Saturday nights. Even the scene when Kyle asks Jodie if she is on her period after they argue, probably is familiar to a lot of women out there. The fight scene between Kyle and his brother is a great scene and a bit touching when you see the tears in Kyle's eyes. It seemed the fight not only affected him physically but emotionally as well. OK and being a Jan-Michael Vincent fan I enjoyed seeing Jan's backside too. There is a lot of music, but maybe because Michael Martin Murphy was the screen writer.
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Kim Basinger Excellent Movie Debut
garyldibert28 January 2013
Warning: Spoilers
TITLE: HARD COUNTRY was release on April 1 1981 and the time on this movie was 104 minutes. Hard Country is a 1981 dramatic movie starring Jan-Michael Vincent and Kim Basinger, and co-starring country music star Tanya Tucker along with Daryl Hannah. It was directed by David Greene and is rated PG in the USA.

SUMMARY: This picture opened in theaters in the USA sometime in April of 1981 starring Jan Michael Vincent as Kyle, Kim Basinger who made her movie debut in this picture starred as Jodie, Michael Parks as Royce and Gayland Sartain as Johnny Bob. This movie is about the lives and that great state of Texas. No one ever moves away from the great state of Texas or even thinks about except one person. That person is a very young lady who's name is Jodie and she works for the telephone company. Jodie is filled with love and has that Georgia charm that makes anyone that comes around her fall in love with her right away. Jodie leaves with a young man name Kyle. Kyle is a young Texas boy who works at a local factor making chain link fences. These two young kids lived together in a little mobile home along with Kyle's dog. The problem is that Kyle likes the some country bars his friends and drinking beer while Jodie wants more. The country bar that everyone goes to is Stallions where they sing drink beer and have a good old country time. One night while at Stallions, a young woman that Jodie grew up is announced as tonight's entertainment and her name was Caroline. After Caroline is down singing her and her friend all, meet at Jodie place to drink and talk. Caroline and Jodie go into another room where they catch up on old times. Jodie biggest dream is that she wanted to become a flight attendant. The next day while at work, one of Jodie's coworkers shows her and ad in the local paper that states that the airlines are holding interviews at the local Marriott Hotel. While in the interview Jodie is asked if she would be willing to go to California for training and she accepted now all she has to do is wait to see if she can get the letter in the mail that states that she was accepted. Things start to erode when while at the Stallion Kyle is called out in a drinking game. The object of the game is both players get a pitcher of beer and the first person that drinks it all and puts his pitcher on the bar wins. After sitting and watching this, Jodie gets up and walks out because she had enough of Kyle childlike behavior.

QUESTIONS: Will Jodie get accepted to the airlines as an Attendant? Will Kyle ever grow up and realize that what he has with Jodie is hard to find. Will Jodie dream of leaving Texas and moved to California ever happen.

MY THOUGHTS: I thought this movie kind of drag a little even thought it had action, adventure, and drama in it. I thought that Kyle was your typical young man who had a good thing going but continue to act like a jerk. I thought Kim Basinger was excellent in her movie debut. She had spunk and knew when to use it. She was not only beautiful but she has talent also. I love the scene where she's cooking breakfast in her underwear and the other scene where she lying in bed with her legs up showing off the gorgeous thighs. I think that this movie could've used some more drama but Kim Basinger saves this movie and that's why I'm going to give this movie 10 weasel stars base on Kim Basinger alone. Kim Basinger movie debut was fantastic
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A decent movie for a movie night
steeleronaldr10 February 2020
Warning: Spoilers
I gotta say upfront, did Jan Michael Vincent ever make a movie where he wasn't a rough neck. Kim Basinger was the best part of the movie. Jan Michael Vincent works better in action and don't think as a dramatic actor he was not. A factory worker by day and dance clubber by night was the only thing I thought this movie shown. The rest of the cast to me were just there. To me they took a great idea and didn't really know what to do with it. I thought it moved around too much and didn't really focus on the main plot. Jan Michael Vincent was really miscast, a different actor who was more a actor could have done more with this script. Next I thought that Country singer Tanya Tucker would have a bigger role than what she had and not just a few minutes of screen time. In all this movie struggled to keep your attention and really doesn't go anywhere. Plus some other scenes were just too hard to believe. Moving a trailer connected to water and power lines would be disastrous, plus the prank they pulled on a guy would have resulted in lawsuits. They should have stayed believable and made the characters more interesting than all of them being flat. I didn't expect much from this movie and wasn't let down.
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