Tony Grist (poliphilo) wrote,
Tony Grist

Fiddler On The Roof

I like the dream sequence with its white-faced ghosts- and who wouldn't be moved when Tevye finally mumbles "God go with you" to the reprobate daughter who married the goy?- but for much of the time this is a movie that's embarrassed by its own stageiness. There's a lot a standing around and being silently down-hearted where there should be bustle and music.  It despises its theatrical origins and aspires to be Dr Zhivago. Great musicals turn upon their songs- which occur when swelling emotion carries the characters beyond mere words. Here the truly dramatic moments are mostly unsung and the songs occur at odd random moments. Tevye is arguing with a daughter's boyfriend and suddenly he's singing at us. Why? The great musicals bulldoze that question aside. Fiddler just sort of shrugs. 
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