7.7/10
365
19 user 2 critic

Pippin: His Life and Times (1981)

At the goading of the ominous and omnipresent Leading Player, Pippin, the eldest son of King Charlemagne, samples life's pleasures to discover his place in the world and the meaning of his life.

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2 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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The Leading Player
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Leslie Denniston ...
Catherine
Benjamin Rayson ...
...
...
Fastrada
Joanie P. Oneill ...
Player
Debra Phelan ...
Player
Linda Haberman ...
Player
Kate Wright ...
Player
Allison Williams ...
Player
John Mineo ...
Sword Bearer
Charles Lee Ward ...
Peasant
Lee Mathis ...
Beggar
Frank Mastrocola ...
Noble
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Storyline

At the goading of the ominous and omnipresent Leading Player, Pippin, the eldest son of King Charlemagne, samples life's pleasures to discover his place in the world and the meaning of his life.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


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Details

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Several smaller numbers which appear in the original and current versions of the show do not appear in this version. One is entitled "There He Was" and is performed by Catherine when she first finds Pippin. Another is "Prayer for Duck" which Pippin sings over the body of Theo's dying duck, a sequence which is absent from this version. See more »

Goofs

The Lead Player sings during the song "Simple Joys" that wouldn't you rather be... "a twig on a fig in Galilee." The line from the song that is supposed to be sung is "a fig on a twig in Galilee". See more »

Quotes

The leading player: Sweet summer evenings, sapphire skies, feasting your belly, feasting your eyes. Simple joys have a simple voice that says time is living's prize. And wouldn't you rather be a left-handed flea, a crab on a slab at the bottom of the sea, a newt on the root of a banyan tree, a fig on twig in Galilee, than a man who never learns how to be free?
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Connections

Version of Pippin See more »

Soundtracks

Finale
Music and Lyrics by Stephen Schwartz
Sung by Ben Vereen, William Katt and The Players
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User Reviews

 
Yeah, the Video Taped version ain't great
16 April 1999 | by (Iowa City, IA) – See all my reviews

But it still manages to capture the look, feel, and spirit of the original stage production. Great musical numbers and dance numbers compensate, IMO, for the flaws of bringing it to video (and the original "director's cut" unedited version makes up for much of the cited flaws anyway).

Pippin isn't really adapted for video, but is rather simply a taping of a stage production (compare it to Cats - the video version _was_ staged for video). This is a mild flaw. Cats obviously takes advantage of F/X, close-ups, etc., while Pippin's camerawork is pretty much static.

The standout is Ben Vereen, at his peak here carrying the show. Chita Rivera (Fastrada) and Benjamin Rayson (Charlemagne) are the best of the supporting player. Katt and Denniston are kinda weak, and Martha Raye, while adequate, isn't as good as Irene Ryan in the original Broadway production.

Overall, Pippin is an entertaining musical which is competently captured on the (complete) video.


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