Number of Times Seen – Too many to count (TV, DVD, 15 Jul 2013)
Brief Synopsis – A Jewish Milkman in pre-Revolution Russia deals with life and the importance of tradition over modernity.
My Take on it – As a kid, I saw this movie so many times on TV and even saw the play a few times. I knew the soundtrack by heart and have always enjoyed the music.
To me, Haim Topol IS Tevya. I never saw Zero Mostel play the role, so I can;t say who was better, but Mostel won a Tony for the role and even was the lead in the play for so many years that it became the longest running Musical and held that record for 25 years.
The themes that the movie deals with is a very popular theme in many cultures but especially Judaism. How far should we be willing to bend to on the one hand keep our traditions, but on the other hand progress with the changes in the world and society.
Tevya sees that once he starts to bend things, his control over the world around him and his family start to slowly slip away.
At what point must he stop his bending of tradition before it completely breaks and could be lost forever?
It lost Best Picture to The French Connection (1971) and based on my previous viewings of it, I would say this ultimately is a better movie and story, but I guess the academy members obviously felt differently 🙂
Go see it!
Bottom Line – One of the best musicals ever made. Topol is great as Tevya. Highly Recommended!!
Rating – Oscar Worthy