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Getting Straight
Getting Straight
Actors: Elliott Gould, Candice Bergen, Robert F. Lyons, Jeff Corey, Max Julien
Director: Richard Rush
Genres: Comedy, Drama, Cult Movies
R     2009     2hr 4min

Elliott Gould stars as a womanizing Vietnam veteran who returns to the university to obtain a degree in education and finds himself involved in campus unrest. This socially relevant comedy co-stars Candice Bergen, John Rub...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Elliott Gould, Candice Bergen, Robert F. Lyons, Jeff Corey, Max Julien
Director: Richard Rush
Creators: Ken Kolb, Robert Kaufman
Genres: Comedy, Drama, Cult Movies
Sub-Genres: Romantic Comedies, Love & Romance, Cult Movies
Studio: Sony Pictures
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen - Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 02/03/2009
Original Release Date: 01/01/1970
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/1970
Release Year: 2009
Run Time: 2hr 4min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 6
MPAA Rating: R (Restricted)
Languages: English
Subtitles: English

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Movie Reviews

M. DONERIAN | East Windsor, CT | 12/02/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Don't let anybody else's review of this fool you. First of all, it's NOT THAT DATED. Secondly, after not seeing this movie since it came out in 1970, I was able to view it with the eyes of an adult instead of a 14 year old young girl.
I first saw this movie in the Summer of 1970, at a Drive-In Theatre with my parents. We went to the Drive-Ins every Saturday in the Summers. This was when they showed first run movies that were popular and had quality. (of course they showed all the other stuff too)
But there was something about GETTING STRAIGHT that has haunted me since 1970. The movie has always been in the back of my mind, so I finally got straight myself, and purchased a copy. And here goes.....This movie should have been nominated for some Academy Awards back then. It is a terrific movie, directed by Richard Rush, who made another favorite of mine.... "PSYCH-OUT". But that's another review. Elliott Gould was at the top of his game at the time this movie was made. Harrison Ford??? (plays a bit part as a student in this film) Who was he???? Well, we found out later, didn't we? He must have been in his late 20's when this was filmed.
The Harry Bailey (Gould) character was a "down on his luck kind of guy", living on the fringes of life and society. In the film, he is a Vietnam Veteran, returning to get a Master's Degree. He wants to be a teacher.
If you think his car is a "classic", then you have no idea of being poor. This guy is so at the edge, he'll do anything to survive. He's not a bad person, but he takes too many shortcuts, and in the end, his integrity is at stake. You will see this yourself. The scene with Cecil Kellaway in a cafeteria where he makes tomato soup out of hot water and ketchup should have gotten him the Oscar right there! Not that it hasn't been done before, but this is no comedy. This is REAL LIFE, and it shows what you have to do just to make it every day! Gould crushes the crackers in the glass as if he has done this in his sleep!
Candace Bergen is his "love interest" and also in the end, she makes the right choice.
What was very real to me at the time in 1970, was the Campus Unrest, Protests, Barbed Wire, and the National Guard. Like Vietnam comes to College. Those scenes were "right on" at the time, because we were embroiled in so much. Kent State had just happened on May 4, 1970; we had Nixon/Agnew in office, Vietnam, Conscientous objectors (Can you say Canada?) Campus Unrest, and Tear Gas, Tear Gas, and then more Tear Gas.
This movie ends on a "high note", although smashing up the building isn't an option I favor highly. But you will get the point.
Well I guess I have rallied on long enough. This is a great movie, with some humour, but just to see Gould try to get through every day alone is worth watching. I am sorry he and Mr. Rush didn't get some well deserved Oscars."
When you say it's dated...
J. Figler | portland, or United States | 03/04/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)

" fail to realize that, to the extent that you are conveying anything meaningful at all, you are paying it a compliment.

The film captures, as well as any film I've ever seen, the disintegration and the insanity of its specific moment. Compare Richard Rush's visceral staging of the campus riots here to any fictional or documentary footage you've run across; even "Medium Cool", the legendary fiction-doc hybrid, comes up feeling distant and tentative. If "Getting Straight" were not so steeped in sweat, incense and tear gas; if it didn't fill the viewer with the dread and danger of the social rift it depicts; if it were lazy, unfocused, generalized, no one would think to apply the term "dated".

The film was not just released in 1970. It is 1970.

Of course it's dated.

It's possible that your use of the term is meant to imply that the film is dumb or corny, but if it were either of these things, it would have been dumb and corny on the day it was released, two years after it was released, and yesterday. If the film didn't have several dozen thoughtful things to say about its milieu, if it were in fact just striking fashionable poses ("Bob and Carol and Ted and Alice" comes immediately to mind as an example of an empty-headed, would-be-"relevant" film of the same era), when its supposed "shock of the new" had worn off, "dated" in this particular derogatory sense might well apply."
A timeless movie about a strange time
Eric C Hedberg | USA | 01/11/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)

"For anyone who has wondered how the 60's turned into the 70's this movie should be the answer. Getting Straight personaifies the transition from extreme activist to pratical adult in Gould's character. This movie is a must for any college student annoyed with what seems to be pointless protests to stupid issues like dorm hours."
Holding It All Together In The '70's
Brian E. Erland | Brea, CA - USA | 04/22/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Synopsis: Harry Bailey (Elliot Gould) is a Viet Nam veteran, student-teacher and graduate candidate working on his Masters Degree in English. With a career path clearly set before him and Jan (Candace Bergen) a beautiful, adoring girlfriend by his side a sedate, middle class future appears secure.

However when Viet Nam War protests break out on campus dividing the student body and the pressures and absurd expectations put on his thesis dissertation by pretentious professors becomes evident Harry begins to doubt the necessity for his long sought after graduate degree. Will Harry play by the rules of the establishment and maintain the status quo, or will he march to the beat of a different drummer? How will he ultimately define his need for `Getting Straight'?

Beyond all the craziness `Getting Straight' is an intelligent thoughtful film with a solid script exploring the absurdities of life inside and outside of the university setting. If you enjoy movies like `The Hospital' and `Network' you'll enjoy this one too."