Tag Archives: Barbra Streisand

Welcome to the Tribe, Tiffany Haddish

When one thinks of a Jewish woman, the image that is conjured is usually that of Barbra Streisand or Fran Drescher.

One does not think of Tiffany Haddish.

A few weeks ago, Tiffany Haddish: Black Mitzvah premiered on Netflix.

The daughter of an African-American mother and an Ethiopian Jewish father, Haddish celebrated her fortieth birthday and embraced her father’s Judaism earlier this month.

I love that she is Jewish and she embraced her Judaism. I love that she reminds audiences that not all Jews look and/or sound like Barbra Streisand or Fran Drescher. We come from all parts of the world and speak as many languages are there are to speak. Some of us have lighter skin, some of us have darker skin.

Either way, we are all Jews and Tiffany Haddish is one of us.

Welcome to the tribe, Tiffany Haddish.

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A Star Is Born Movie Review

For every performer that succeeds in Hollywood, there are many who stand on the cusp of success, but never achieve it.

In the new movie, A Star Is Born, Jack (Bradley Cooper) is a rock star with a capital R. He also has issues with drinking and drug addictions. In a drag bar after a show, Jack meets Ally (Lady Gaga). Ally can sing like nobody’s business, but has yet to even get close to a career as a musician. She has to earn her living in a restaurant while singing in a drag bar.

Jack persuades Ally to sing at one of his concerts. Soon, their personal relationship blooms as quickly as Ally’s career. But while Ally is finally seeing her dream become a reality, she is dealing with the breakdown of her relationship and Jack’s issues getting the best of him.

Every word of praise that has been uttered for this film is entirely earned. As star, director and co-screenwriter, Bradley Cooper throws himself into the film. Unlike other actors who have thought themselves to be able to direct and star in a film, Cooper is able to do so while creating a realistic portrait of a musician who is letting his demons overshadow his professional achievements.  For her part, Lady Gaga is an exception actress. It’s one thing to play a character in a reboot, its another thing to play character in a film that has been rebooted twice since the original film made it’s debut. Stepping into the shoes of Janet Gaynor (1937), Judy Garland (1954) and Barbra Streisand (1976), Lady Gaga plays the role of Ally as if she was born to do so.

I absolutely recommend it. I would not be surprised if A Star Is Born does well come award season.

A Star Is Born is presently in theaters. 

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Flashback Friday- Yentl (1983)

It has been a common practice for centuries that boys receive extensive educations when girls receive education that can be described as minimal.

But that does mean that women have not dreamed and found creative ways to become educated.

In Yentl (1983),  Yentl (Barbra Streisand) is a Jewish girl who is yearning for an education. Based on the short story by Isaac Bashevis Singer, titled “Yentl, The Yeshiva Boy”, Yentl will do anything for education, including cross dressing. After her widower Rabbi father who previously forbade his daughter from learning the Talmud passes way, Yentl sheds the clothes of a woman, changes her name to Anshel and pretends to be a man. The experience is educational well beyond the classroom. Yentl likes Avigdor (Mandy Patinkin), while Hadass (Amy Irving) who is engaged to Avigdor likes Anshel, not knowing that Yentl is not a he.

This movie is very interesting.  While it remains true to the original story, the odd combination of traditional Jewish Eastern European storytelling with Twelfth Night twist makes it stand out.

I recommend it.

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Filed under Feminism, Flashback Friday, History, Movie Review, Movies, William Shakespeare