Saturday, August 29, 2020

Fiddler on the Roof

I have always been a sucker for 60's musicals, having grown up in that time, living with the soundtracks and often singing the songs in one fashion or another - home, school, in the playgrounds. I always loved the choreography that was displayed in these movies (as well as in the various variety shows of the time) and appreciated the way the films would combine the music and visuals.

Fiddler is set in the early 1900's Russia and focuses on the changes that a family goes through as the daughters grow up and become independent while the Tsar eventually evicts the Jews from their village.

I am sure that I was entranced by the fact that the main characters were rebelling against the "tradition" that the older generation was extolling, as was happening everywhere in the 60's - the movie is obviously a simile for the then-modern times. The father eventually comes around and understands that things like love matter more than tradition and that tradition does not supercede the ultimate political authority, which is what squashed the rebellion of the 60's.

The cinematography is especially nice, with effective bits such as the father, who has regular conversations with God, suddenly finding himself far away from the people whose situation he is discussing with God. But, the sights in general are effective and rich in colors and show fine direction with lots of fantastic shots'n'angles (a wow shot - stark white geese against a grey graveyard scene).

It is a sad story, but also filled with hope and love that they pray will overcome the situations that they find themselves in - as many can relate to in this modern day'n'age, as they could in the 60's.

A timeless tale, as people try to find themselves and try to find love in a world that cares nothing for them, for what else can we all do?