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You think you're easy? Compared to what, the Hundred Years' War?


The Way We Were
(1973)

Streisand and Redford endure ups and downs against the backdrop of changing attitudes to Communism in America. Or rather, against the incessant accompaniment of bleedin’ Memories. It’s fortunate that the song reminds me more of Priscilla Presley singing in the shower in The Naked Gun 2 1/2: The Smell of Fear. Otherwise it would have been unbearable. 

As it is, the undercurrent of conflict between Streisand’s headstrong politicised Jew and Redford’s easy-going pretty-boy WASP never amounts to much in the way of substance, certainly not enough to take away the prevailing taste of sentiment and mawkish montage. It feels like it’s there to inform us that, “This isn’t just a love story; see, it’s has a serious message, and it’s a period piece to boot”. 

Occasionally there’s a glimmer of involving storytelling, but it soon sinks beneath the weight of the star wattage involved. It would be nearly a decade before another pretty boy star made a love story revolving around American Communism; one that would actually do the subject justice.

**

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