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Fiddler on the Roof is a american film of genre Drama directed by Norman Jewison released in USA on 3 november 1971 with Chaim Topol

Fiddler on the Roof (1971)

Fiddler on the Roof
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Released in USA 3 november 1971
Length 2h52
Directed by
OriginUSA
Genres Drama,    Comedy-drama,    Musical,    Romance
Rating79% 3.9989553.9989553.9989553.9989553.998955

Fiddler on the Roof is a 1971 American musical comedy-drama film produced and directed by Norman Jewison. It is an adaptation of the 1964 Broadway musical of the same name, with music composed by Jerry Bock, lyrics by Sheldon Harnick, and screenplay by Joseph Stein. The film won three Academy Awards, including one for arranger-conductor John Williams. It was nominated for several more, including Best Picture, Best Actor for Chaim Topol as Tevye, and Best Supporting Actor for Leonard Frey, who played Mottel Kamzoil the Tailor (both had originally acted in the musical; Topol as Tevye in the London production and Frey in a minor part as Mendel, the rabbi's son). The decision to cast Topol, instead of Zero Mostel, as Tevye was a somewhat controversial one, as the role had originated with Mostel and he had made it famous. Years later, Jewison explained that he felt Mostel's larger-than-life personality, while fine on stage, would cause film audiences to see him (i.e., Zero Mostel, the actor) rather than the character of Tevye.

The film centers on the Tevye family, a Jewish family living in the town of Anatevka, in the Russian Empire, in 1905. Anatevka is broken into two sections: a small Orthodox Jewish section and a larger Russian Orthodox Christian section. Tevye notes that, "We don't bother them, and so far, they don't bother us." Throughout the film, Tevye breaks the fourth wall by talking at times, directly to the audience or to the heavens (to God), for the audience's benefit. Much of the story is also told in musical form.

Tevye is not wealthy, partly because he has a lot of children, despite working hard, like most Jews in Anatevka. He and his sharp-tongued wife, Golde, have five daughters and cannot afford to give them much in the way of dowries. According to their tradition, they have to rely on the village matchmaker, Yente, to find them husbands. Life in the little town of Anatevka is very hard and Tevye speaks not only of the difficulties of being poor but also of the Jewish community's constant fear of harassment from their non-Jewish neighbors. In addition, Tevye has a lame horse that adds to the misery of being poor, and has to pull the wagon by himself.

Synopsis

In 1905, Tevye, a poor Jewish milkman living in the Russian village of Anatevka, explains to the audience what keeps the Jews of Anatevka going is the balance they achieve through following their ancient traditions, comparing their precarious circumstance to a fiddler on a roof: trying to scratch out a pleasant tune, while not breaking their necks. The fiddler appears throughout the film as a metaphoric reminder of the Jews' ever-present fears and danger, and also as a symbol of the traditions Tevye is trying to hold on to as his world changes around him. While in town, Tevye meets Perchik, a radical Marxist from Kiev. Tevye invites Perchik to stay with him and his family, and as a deal, offers him food, in exchange for Perchik tutoring his daughters.

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