Fiddler’s Journey to the Big Screen Movie Review

Fiddler on the Roof is one of those movies that we all know. Even if we have never seen the film or the various stage adaptations, the songs and the story are iconic in their own right.

The new documentary film, Fiddler’s Journey to the Big Screen was recently released in theaters. It tells the story of how the original 1960s stage show became a big-screen sensation a decade later. Based on the stories by Sholem Aleichem, the audience follows Tevye (Topol), a Jewish dairyman living in poverty who is trying to provide for his wife and five daughters in the fiction shtetl of Anatevka in the early 20th century. His three eldest daughters, Tzeitel (Rosalind Harris), Hodel (Michele Marsh), and Chava (Neva Small) are all of marriageable age and test the social boundaries of the period.

In addition to interviews with the actors, the audience also is taken behind the scenes by director Norman Jewison (who despite his surname is not a member of the tribe) and musical director John Williams. Narrated by Jeff Goldblum, this is a love letter to a beloved narrative and characters who transcend time, culture, and religion.

I loved this movie. It was everything I could have wanted and more. The making of the original film was a labor of love for all involved. Told with authenticity, heart, and nothing but love, this documentary is nothing short of perfection.

Do I recommend it? Absolutely. I would even go as far as to say that this is one of my favorite movies of the year so far.

Fiddler’s Journey to the Big Screen is currently playing in theaters.

Fiddler On The Roof Broadway GIF by GREAT PERFORMANCES | PBS - Find & Share on GIPHY


The War of Return: How Western Indulgence of the Palestinian Dream Has Obstructed the Path to Peace Book Review

It has been said that The road to hell is paved with good intentions. The intent is obviously there, but the followthrough is lacking.

The War of Return: How Western Indulgence of the Palestinian Dream Has Obstructed the Path to Peace, by Adi Schwartz and Einat Wilf was published in 2020. Starting in 1948, Schwartz and Wilf examine how the promised “right of return” by Arab leaders and the wishy-washy response by the rest of the world had a hand in adding fuel to the fire that is the Israel/Palestinian conflict. They reveal how the “right of return” and UNRWA have purposely created the refugee problem and decades of violence instead of working toward peace and co-existence.

Obviously, my reading this book is preaching to the choir. The purpose of it is to speak to a reader whose knowledge of the topic is either minimal or tainted by the not so truth headlines in the world press. The problem from my perspective is that their arguments are not as strong as they could have been. I don’t know what I would add, but it just needs a little something extra that is missing.

Do I recommend it? Maybe.

The War of Return: How Western Indulgence of the Palestinian Dream Has Obstructed the Path to Peace is available wherever books are sold.

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