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Fiddler on the Roof [DVD] [1971]


Price: £4.83 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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Fiddler on the Roof [DVD] [1971] + West Side Story [Special Edition] [DVD] [1961] + South Pacific / The King And I / Oklahoma! [DVD]
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Product details

  • Actors: Topol, Norma Crane, Leonard Frey, Molly Picon, Paul Mann
  • Directors: Norman Jewison
  • Writers: Arnold Perl, Joseph Stein, Sholom Aleichem
  • Producers: Norman Jewison, Patrick J. Palmer, Walter Mirisch
  • Format: PAL, Dolby, Digital Sound, Colour, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: Dutch, Swedish, Finnish, Norwegian, Danish, Portuguese, Greek, Hebrew, Turkish
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: Twentieth Century Fox
  • DVD Release Date: 10 Nov. 2003
  • Run Time: 172 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (180 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0000BZND9
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,407 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Product Description

Screen version of the popular Broadway musical. In pre-Revolutionary Ukraine, Jewish fiddler Tevye (Topol) plans to marry off his three daughters. However, none of the girls chooses what their father considers to be a suitable partner. Meanwhile, the Russian Czar and Cossacks begin a campaign of intimidation against Tevye's village. Songs include 'If I Were a Rich Man' and 'Sunrise, Sunset'.

From Amazon.co.uk

Fiddler on the Roof arrived in cinemas in 1971, seven years after the Sheldon Harnick/Jerry Bock musical about Jewish life in a pre-Revolution Russian village first gripped Broadway. Based on the stories of Shalom Aleichem, with its potent mixture of sentiment and religious and historical context, it remains one of the most popular shows of the modern age. With the help of an outstanding performance from Topol as Tevye--the milkman with five daughters kicking at the constraints of tradition--Norman Jewison's captivating film retains a moving intimacy in its portrayal of relationships in changing times.

But it also stretches the possibilities of location shooting--in this case the countryside of the former Yugoslavia--further than any musical movie before or since. The villagers are played by the inhabitants of the area, lending a poignant realism to the vibrant crowd scenes. And the cinematography is spectacular, with Jewison's clever use of distance generating an epic feel that helps to explain the story's continuing resonance and popularity.

Topol's career-defining star turn is balanced by the warmth and sensitivity of the surrounding performances, particularly Norma Crane as his abrasive wife Golda. British sitcom fans will spot early appearances by Roger Lloyd Pack, and Ruth Madoc as the demonic butcher's wife, Fruma Sarah. At nearly three hours, it's a long emotional haul, but aided by some of the most beautiful songs in musical history, Jewison's Fiddler is ageless.

On the DVD: Fiddler on the Roof Special Edition is presented on DVD in widescreen with a Dolby soundtrack that makes a mighty meal of John Williams' Oscar-winning musical adaptation. The most fascinating extras are a making-of documentary that shows a youthful, slightly tetchy Jewison at work, and a 2003 reminiscence in which all of his passion and feel for the piece has survived intact. He shares a commentary with Topol crammed with vivid memories and context. There is also a photographic gallery showing the resources that were used to give the film its authenticity, and Jewison reads extracts from original Aleichem stories. --Piers Ford

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Dodster TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 29 Oct. 2007
Format: DVD
The story of life in the village of Anatevka, in Russia, as told through the eyes of the Jewish milkman, Tevye (Chaim Topol).
All of life's emotions are in this film. Joy, despair, fear... All brought to life by brilliant acting, humour and song such as 'If I were a rich man', 'Sunrise, sunset'.
You cannot watch this movie and remain untouched by the plight of the Jewish people, as they sought to go about their business, but suffer bitter persecution for no other reason than being Jewish.
One of my favourite quotes is when a student asks the Rabbi if there is a blessing for the Czar. The Rabbi thinks, then smiles...'May God bless the Czar and keep him... far from us!'
This is a long movie at 3 hours, but it draws in you to such an extent that the time flies.
Highly recommended. One for all the family.
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50 of 52 people found the following review helpful By Dorie on 22 April 2005
Format: DVD
"Fiddler on the Roof" is one of the best films ever made. It is a musical with wonderful songs, but at the same time, it is so much more. First and foremost, it is a film about family ties, values, and conflicts. It is a film about love. It is a historical film. It is very funny, very witty, and very sad, all at the same time. I laughed, and then I cried. It has memorable characters: Haim Topol, who played Tevya the milkman on the stage in London, is made for the role, and has become identified with it. He portrays an authoritative, yet sympathetic father, and he is the source of many witty and very funny comments about life. Just to give you a few examples: "Would it spoil some vast eternal plan / If I were a wealthy man?" or "A bird may love a fish, but where will they build a house together?" or in attempting to explain why it is necessary to stick to tradition, "I'll tell you. I don't know."
Norma Crane is wonderful in playing Tevye's wife. Life has not been good to her, and this shows, and she has never experienced romantic love. It takes 25 years to realize that she loves Tevye, to whom she was married through the matchmaker. But she is a good, loving, and despite her bitterness, forgiving mother.
There are other memorable characters, such as Yente the matchmaker, Lazer Wolf the butcher, and Mottel the tailor. The three eldest daughters are beautiful and dream of a great match. Their song, "Matchmaker," is one of the best songs ever written for a musical. Going contrary to tradition, each of them foregoes the services of the matchmaker and marries out of love, even if the price is poverty, suffering, or banishment from the family.
The first part of the film focuses on ordinary everyday life in the village of Anatevka.
Read more ›
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Ms. H. Sinton on 22 Feb. 2005
Format: DVD
Tevye (played brilliantly by Topol) is a poor Russian trying to keep house for his wife and five daughters. Life plods on in daily grind until the day he tries to arrange a marriage for his oldest daughter only to find she has promised to marry a local tailor. This goes against everything he believes in and his struggle to come to terms with the changes around him is both hilarious and poignant to watch. I'd defy any parent not to get emotional when watching 'Sunrise Sunset' being sang at the wedding.
When daughter number two decides to follow the poor student she loves to his exile in Siberia, Tevya is still upset but more philosophical than previously. However, daughter number three, the apple of his eye, has chosen to marry a Gentile, to turn her back on the Jewish faith. His torment is palpable as he tries to reconcile his beliefs with his love for his daughter.
Set during the time of the Russian Pogroms, where Jews were being driven from their homes and into exile, this is at times a very sad film. However, for the greater part of the film, Tevyas exhuberance is infectious and the music is wonderful, such songs as 'If I were a Rich Man', 'Matchmaker, Matchmaker', 'Wonder of Wonders',have you tapping your feet.
One of the best musicals ever made. Highly recommended.
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful By P. B. Hall on 3 Oct. 2003
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Although superficially a sentimental musical, Fiddler’s enduring popularity rests on its timeless representation of the conflict between the internal cohesion of community and tradition, and the external forces of ethnic strife and progress. It is also impossible to watch it without bringing away some understanding of the Jewish condition, whatever your views on present-day Israel.
Topol strides like a magnetic giant through the film, in the role with which he has become synonymous, bouncing off a strong supporting international cast. Watch out for Michael Glaser in a non-singing role, his ‘Starsky and Hutch’ days still to come. The village of Anatevka was beautifully recreated in minuscule detail by set designers in Yugoslavia, and succeeds in transferring this stage play to the screen believably.
The DVD commentary by Topol and director Norman Jewison provide a fascinating insight into the research that went into making the film look and feel authentic. Anecdotes also reveal, amongst other things, how make-up artists laboured to age the 35-year-old Topol, the real reason for his passionate expression during the ‘Rich Man’ song, how they managed to keep ‘God’ in place between shots and what happened to Tevye’s horse after the production was finished.
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