Fiddler: A Miracle of Miracles

Critics Consensus

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100%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 35

100%

Audience Score

Verified Ratings: 52
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Movie Info

The origin story behind one of Broadway's most beloved musicals, Fiddler on The Roof, and its creative roots in early 1960s New York, when "tradition" was on the wane as gender roles, sexuality, race relations and religion were evolving.

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Critic Reviews for Fiddler: A Miracle of Miracles

All Critics (35) | Top Critics (10) | Fresh (35)

  • What makes it brilliant is that it demonstrates how universal this distinctly Jewish musical has become, how it has been embraced by many cultures and how it is still influential today.

    Aug 28, 2019 | Full Review…
  • It made me totally want to go see [Fiddler on the Roof] again... A really enlightening documentary.

    Aug 26, 2019 | Full Review…
  • There's considerable pleasure to be had here, particularly in the interweaving of several decades' performance clips in various staging styles and languages.

    Aug 23, 2019 | Full Review…

    Dennis Harvey

    Variety
    Top Critic
  • [T]his engaging and enlightening documentary is stuffed with anecdotes, history and information. It makes excellent use of both new interviews and carefully selected archival footage to reveal the building blocks of all this accomplishment.

    Aug 22, 2019 | Full Review…
  • The heart of "Fiddler" is family, and the film really touches on the meaning of family -- where not everything is pretty, and not everyone gets along, yet there's a connective tissue that offers a warm embrace to the audience.

    Aug 22, 2019 | Full Review…
  • Max Lewkowicz's documentary keeps reminding us of the multiple sources of inspiration for this quintessentially Jewish musical, from the paintings of Marc Chagall to the politics of the day.

    Aug 22, 2019 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Fiddler: A Miracle of Miracles

  • Sep 01, 2019
    EXTRADITION -My Review of FIDDLER: A MIRACLE OF MIRACLES (3 Stars) I played Motel the Tailor in our 5th grade acappella version of Fiddler On The Roof. We were so young, we really didn't understand the gravity of this dark story about religious traditions and ethnic cleansing, choosing instead to smile our way through the final song in which a population of Russian Jews have been turned into refugees. I mean, what business did this story have being a musical? To us, "Anatevka" had a pretty melody and you could almost dance to it. My acting style consisted of lifting my right arm up and down while singing "Miracle Of Miracles". We were 10 year olds putting on an adult-themed musical. What did we know? Still, this show has always had a special place in my heart, so when I heard about Fiddler: A Miracle Of Miracles, a documentary by Max Lewkowicz, I had to go, right? Of course, right! Since opening on Broadway in 1964, not a day has gone by where the musical has not been staged somewhere in the world. This documentary, which features a treasure trove of archival footage, including The Tempations singing "If I Were A rich Man", explores its far-reaching appeal despite initial terrible reviews. There really wasn't a lot of drama to report, so instead, Lewkowicz focuses instead on what Fiddler has meant to the people involved in its many productions. Sure, it's sycophantic, but it's also generous in its exploration of how people of all cultures have found a universal connection with this production. From its earliest inception, where we see its creators trying out some eventually discarded lyrics, to its legendary Broadway run and Oscar winning 1971 film, Fiddler On The Roof has always appealed to the Jewish population. Surprisingly, however, when we see productions in Japan and Thailand or in the African American community, it's relatable to all. It's so wonderfully touching to hear one African American actor geek out over the show and how much she loves theater. I also loved how one scholar compares the ostracizing of the daughter Chava, who marries outside her faith, to that of a gay kid kicked out of their family home. The filmmaker reached out to so many people involved, giving what is ultimately a documentary for fans a more expansive overview of how art affects people. Norman Jewison, who directed the feature, hilariously recounts how everyone assumed he was Jewish because of his name, but he's not. Topol, who starred in the film, still gets choked up remembering filming certain scenes. The most moving segments, however, show us unknown actors in various countries connecting with the material. I found it disarming how relevant the story is to our current global immigration and refugee crises. Fiddler ends up a sweet keepsake for people who love the musical, nothing more nothing less. But then again, I'm extremely biased. To this day, I still have a wind-up figurine on my nightstand which plays "Sunrise/Sunset" (see below). Yeah, it's a serious situation. To paraphrase a famous Jewish quote, "You don't have to have adored the musical to enjoy Fiddler: A Miracle Of Miracles, but it wouldn't hurt!
    Glenn G Super Reviewer

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