The Pawnbroker (1965)
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as Sol Nazerman
as Marilyn Birchfield
as Jesus Ortiz
as Ortiz's Girl
as Mr. Smith
as Mrs. Ortiz
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Critic Reviews for The Pawnbroker
The Pawnbroker is a paradoxically obsessed with death, yet roaring with life, a jazzy urban tragedy that sees shadows of the Holocaust in the suffering and exploitation of the dead-eyed souls of East Harlem.
The film makes its point with narrative economy and emotional sophistication in a socially complex contemporary context.
An unpleasant, solemn and overwrought melodrama about an embittered Jewish Holocaust survivor still haunted by his stay in Auschwitz.
One of the first Hollywood films to deal with the Holocaust, The Pawnbroker is thematically and stylistically innovative, borrowing some of its devices from the French New Wave, such as brief flashbacks, stylized b/w imagery, and jazzy score.
Audience Reviews for The Pawnbroker
Perhaps one of the few films about the legacy of the Holocaust, that is entirely focused on despair and emptiness . . . that being said, I get the feeling that Lumet was a little too into the French New Wave when he made this. I don't mean to belittle that movement, but it doesn't completely works for this kind of narrative.
Steiger is wonderful as an emotional (and physical) survivor attempting some degree of normal after being through horror. A hit for Lumet.
An amazingly acted & directed punch to the gut. Check out Ralph Rosenblum's great book for a look at the editing of this picture. It's called, When Shooting Stops.
The Pawnbroker Quotes
|Ruth Nazerman:||Papa is dead, what am I going to do Sol?|
|Sol Nazerman:||You bury him, there's nothing else to do.|
|Ruth Nazerman:||Sol when you talk like that you're not human.|
|Sol Nazerman:||What do you want me to do, come over and cry with you? Well to hell with your crying.|
|Sol Nazerman:||Do you believe in God Ortiz?|
|Jesus Ortiz:||I don't know Mr. Nazerman but you believe in God, and I'd make book on that.|
|Sol Nazerman:||I do not believe in God, or art, or science, or newspapers, or politics, or philosophy.|
|Sol Nazerman:||Next to the speed of light, which Einstein tells us is the only absolute in the universe, second only to that, I rank money.|
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