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the pawnbroker: import (region 0)~Rod Steiger~Brock Peters~directed by Sidney Lumet...

4.2 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Format: NTSC, Black & White, Widescreen
  • Subtitles: English, Korean
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B003NJXQM4
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 18,263 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

import

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
`The Pawnbroker' was directed in 1965 by: Sidney Lumet (12 Angry Men,1957; Serpico, 1973; Dog Day Afternoon, 1974)

The film deals with a Holocaust survivor suffering survivor's guilt after his wife and children died in the camps. He is now experiencing flash-backs to he experiences in the camps. He is clearly a man at war with himself and seeks to isolate himself from the world and people believing only in absolutes. Several people who appear to be lonely and desperate come into the store simply seeking company or help only to turned away by his now cold indifference. Essentially this is a wonderful character study of man who has given up on life believing the world to be cruel and inhumane.

Cinematography on `The Pawnbroker' was by Boris Kaufman the younger brother of Dziga Vertov (Man With A Movie Camera,1929) He had shot perhaps the finest of all poetic realist films, `L'Atalante' (1934, Jean Vigo) as well as `Zero For Conduct' (1933. Jean Vigo). In 1942 he moved to America where he made a name for himself by working with Elia Kazan on `On The Waterfront'(1954)and `Baby Doll' (1956) winning an Oscar for the former. His cinematography had a high contrast monochromatic element to it that can be clearly seen in `The Pawnbroker'. It has the same grittiness that can also be seen in the films of John Cassavettes. Music was composed by Quincy Jones which gives it a sixties Harlem flavour. The film stars the underrated Rod Steiger (On The Waterfront, 1954; In The Heat Of The Night, 1967; Fist Full Of Dynamite, 1972) in the lead role. I found the film well worth watching because it avoids a lot the sentimentality that can be seen in films of this nature.
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By A Customer on 28 July 2000
Format: VHS Tape
This is not so much film noir (not that it's meant to be) as film gris. The seedy streets and pawn shop in the middle of somewhere downtown New York provide the backdrop for Steiger to play a Jewish man who has lived through the horrors of Nazi Germany, and now finds himself clinging grimly on to his life and business in another ghetto. You can see the workings of this man's mind clearly, even the flashbacks he's getting of the atrocities of the past, behind the increasingly ashen colour of his face as the plot unfolds. The tributes go to Steiger - this must be one of his most impressive performances in his portrayal of the psychological make up of the damaged Sol Nazerman, and Sidney Lumet whose direction is quite innovative in the Hollywood context of its time. His use of flashback is at first almost subliminal and adds greatly to the sense of turmoil in Nazerman's mind, not just revealing his past but showing us that the trauma is still with him and spilling over into his current life. Some people are bothered by the soundtrack, which is a little odd at times but didn't worry me greatly; I was more disappointed by a slightly weak ending, but by then the point has been made and the performance given which in this case are the most important elements.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Rod Steiger was a great screen actor and Sidney Lumet a great director. But I don't think either of them ever bettered this tumultuous tale of an embittered concentration camp victim whose family have been murdered and whose humanity has been drowned. The film is technically innovative, using flashbacks that are almost subliminal. But the heart of it is emotional and moral and it never fails to grip. For me, it's one of the greatest films ever.
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Format: Blu-ray
VIDEO:

The Pawnbroker arrives on blu-ray with MPEG-4 AVC 1080p 1.85:1 encode. This transfer brings out the best of Boris Kaufman's stunning cinematography. The black and white image is bright and clear with sharp, focused edges and a fantastic amount of fine detail. That detail is present in nearly every scene, and it helps show a remarkable difference in the three stages of Sol's life. Sidney Lumet and Boris Kaufman utilize extreme close-ups quite a bit of the time, and those reveal superb fine detail. There is a high level of contrast throughout, with deep inky blacks. Grains are present. Olive Films has done a great job in this great looking transfer for a film that certainly deserves one. (4.5/5)

AUDIO:

The Pawnbroker's lossless DTS-HD Master Audio Mono track offers a clear accounting of the dialogue, with great detail and clarity, while also playing up the fantastic score from Quincy Jones. The score is presented in a surprisingly rich and deep manner. You may recognize iconic tune Soul Bossa Nova, which is utilized as a source cue during a love scene. (4/5)

MOVIE:

This is a very powerful movie and one of the first films to deal with the effects of Nazi Germany's concentration camps on their survivors. Sol Nazerman (Rod Steiger), operator of a pawn shop, and a concentration camp survivor faces a horrid internal conflict. Now he only cares for money and is engulfed in a New York ghetto Environment, haunted by daydreams, actually flashbacks from the period of the concentration camp. The other character in the film includes Sol’s young ambitious Latino assistant Jesus Ortez (Jaime Sanchez), whose association with local gangster Rodrigues (Brock Peters), and Sol’s attitude, ultimately led to his own tragic end.
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