Awake and Sing!

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Walter Matthau stars in this made-for-TV adaptation of Clifford Odets' classic stage drama (which became one of the inaugural production of the famed Group Theater in the mid-'30s). The Berger family are an extended Jewish family living in the Bronx who are struggling to survive in the face of poverty and difficult circumstances. To earn some extra money, the Bergers have decided to rent a room to a boarder, and Moe Axelrod (Matthau), a veteran of the Great War who lost a leg in battle, becomes the new face in the household. Moe has a bitter sense of humor and a willingness to speak his mind, and his outspoken nature soon wins him an ally in Grandfather Jacob (Leo Fuchs), an outspoken leftist who believes the family should rise up and take action against the economic and political circumstances which hold them down. The supporting cast also includes Ron Rifkin and acclaimed director Martin Ritt.


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