5.8/10
3,123
60 user 16 critic

The Jazz Singer (1980)

The son of a Jewish Cantor must defy the traditions of his religious father in order to pursue his dream of being a popular singer.

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Writers:

(play), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 3 Golden Globes. Another 3 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Jess Robin / Yussel Rabinovitch
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Molly Bell
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Rivka Rabinovitch
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Bubba
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Keith Lennox
Sully Boyar ...
Eddie Gibbs
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Leo
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Paul Rossini
Luther Waters ...
Teddy
Oren Waters ...
Mel
Rod Gist ...
Timmy
Walter Janovitz ...
Rabbi Birnbaum (as Walter Janowitz)
Janet Brandt ...
Aunt Tillie
...
M.C. Cinderella Club
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Storyline

Neil Diamond stars in this motion picture as Yussel Rabinovitch, a young Jewish cantor who strives to make a career outside the synagogue in popular music as Jess Robin. Against the wishes of his rigid father and his loving wife, Yussel travels from New York City to Los Angeles to play his music. Swept up by the excitement, he meets a spunky manager who believes in his talent and shares his dream. He grows apart from his family, and becomes confused about what he should ultimately do with his life. Written by Ted Kula <tkula@cs.wvu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

His story will make you cry. His music will make you sing. His triumph will make you cheer. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Music | Romance

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

19 December 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Cantaretul de jazz  »

Box Office

Gross:

$27,118,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| (DVD version)| (DVD version)|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Neil Diamond once said of this movie whilst doing publicity for the film: "It was a unique experience to come up with songs that would comment on the film's storyline, yet not intrude on it. People constantly ask me why, with all my success, I find moviemaking so special. I believe that film is perhaps the greatest form of mass communication as well as an art form, fulfilling all the elements of people's fantasies, Besides, its a natural progression for most in the music business. Bing Crosby did it, [Frank] Sinatra and Elvis [Presley] did it, John Denver, Helen Reddy, Bette Midler, [Barbra] Streisand and Kris Kristofferson have all done it - it's tricky and you have to be lucky, but the success rate is high. By making a movie we allow our music to reach countless millions around the world. It's a challenge combining all our performing elements. Without that challenge, we grow stale.". See more »

Goofs

When Jess' father comes to visit him in California and they walk into the apartment, Jess never shuts the door completely. Later when Molly comes home, we hear the sound of the door opening. See more »

Quotes

Molly Bell: I'm with Keith Lennox productions. Molly. Molly Bell. That's what they call me. My real name is a lot longer.
Jess Robin: So's mine.
Molly Bell: Belengocavela?
Jess Robin: Rabinovitch?
Molly Bell: Oh. That's not bad.
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Soundtracks

Adon Olom
Traditional Adaptation by Neil Diamond and Uri Frenkel
Adaptation © 1980 Stonebridge Music
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User Reviews

 
The Jazz Singer-When Accommodations Were Made ***1/2
17 February 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Wonderful version of a cantor's son in conflict over his orthodox Jewish beliefs and his desire to be a singing star.

The only major flaw that I had with this film is that by the orthodox Jewish people, there is no accommodation made whatsoever in the field of intermarriage. If it occurs, the person intermarrying is regarded as dead as depicted in the film.

Caitlin Adams, who portrayed Jesse's wife Rivka, is true to life since she chose to break with her husband due to her orthodox beliefs. Others might argue that their marriage was headed towards a downward spiral anyway.

Laurence Olivier is absolutely mesmerizing as Diamond's father. His authentic Jewish accent and tearing his clothes are memorable.

Diamond's voice is superb and is acting is on par for the role. "Love on the Rocks," as well as "Acapulco," and "Coming to America" are wonderfully staged.

In the world of today, we need understanding and accommodation and that's exactly what we get in this fine film.


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