The Way We Were (1973)

Everything seemed so important then... even love!

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

***A radical Left-winger falls in love with a more conservative WASP on the verge of WW2 and post-war***
A disparate couple meets in college in 1937, New York, and then reignite after the war. Katie (Barbra Streisand) is an uber-Liberal while Hubbell (Robert Redford) is more levelheaded about politics. He becomes a writer in Hollywood during the blacklist investigations of the late 40s wherein Katie’s activism threatens his social life and career. The story closes in 1957.
“The Way We Were” (1973) is a classic drama/romance, much acclaimed in its day. The vibe is similar to “Love Story” (1970) but this has superior characters and a more interesting setting.
It’s interesting to see how loony Liberals existed way back then in the 30s-40s. The movie works because it wisely makes Katie three-dimensional. Sure, she’s a typical INtolerant, obnoxious Leftie, but she also has a human side, a warm and humble side. Meanwhile Redford is at the top of his game here. Streisand incidentally developed a crush on Redford during shooting, but didn’t share her feelings. He feigned ignorance and used Barbra’s infatuation for the benefit of the movie.
There has been some confusion about the last act. Pay attention to what Hubbell says. What happens has nothing to do with Carol Ann and everything to do with the obvious.
The film runs 1 hour, 58 minutes, and was shot in Union College in Schenectady, New York; Ballston Spa in upstate New York; New York City; Malibu; and nearby Union Station in Los Angeles. The peripheral cast includes Bradford Dillman, Lois Chiles and James Woods.
GRADE: B

Rastar Productions, Tom Ward Enterprises, Columbia Pictures by Sydney Pollack, Arthur Laurents, Francis Ford Coppola, Paddy Chayefsky, Herb Gardner, David Rayfiel, Alvin Sargent, Dalton Trumbo.
Stars: Barbra Streisand, Robert Redford, Bradford Dillman, Lois Chiles.

Genres: Drama, Romance

Keywords: based on novel or book communist politics anti-communism mccarthyism 1940s 1950s

10/17/1973

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