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Yentl (1983)

6.6
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 8,257 users  
Reviews: 60 user | 12 critic

A Jewish girl disguises herself as a boy to enter religious training.

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(screenplay), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Title: Yentl (1983)

Yentl (1983) on IMDb 6.6/10

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Won 1 Oscar. Another 5 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Reb Mendel 'Papa'
...
Reb Alter Vishkower
...
Shimmele
Ruth Goring ...
Esther Rachel
David de Keyser ...
Rabbi Zalman (as David De Keyser)
Bernard Spear ...
Tailor
Doreen Mantle ...
Mrs. Shaemen
Lynda Baron ...
Peshe (as Lynda Barron)
Jack Lynn ...
Bookseller
Anna Tzelniker ...
Mrs. Kovner
...
Sarah
Mary Henry ...
Mrs. Jacobs
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Storyline

Dramatization of "Yentl, the Yeshiva Boy," by Isaac Bashevis Singer (1902-1991); originally published in Yiddish c. 1960, then in English c. 1983. The story: In an Ashkenazic shtetl in Poland, Yentl Mendel is the boyishly klutzy daughter and only child of long widowed Rebbe ("Talmud Teacher") Mendel, who teaches Talmud (a codification of Jewish Law) to local boys - and to Yentl, but secretly because girls were not allowed to learn the law in those days. When her father dies, Yentl is all alone in the world. She takes the momentous decision to leave the village and - disguised as a boy and calling herself by the name of her late brother, Anshel - seeks and gets admitted to a Yeshiva, to study the texts, traditions, subtleties and complexities of Torah, Talmud, etc. She befriends Avigdor who is engaged to Haddas, but her family discovers his brother committed suicide so they call off the wedding (in case Avigdor possesses the same madness). Anshel then finds "him"-self in the awkward ... Written by Micheal McLoughlin

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

study | yeshiva | talmud | wedding | love | See more »

Taglines:

Nothing's Impossible See more »

Genres:

Drama | Musical | Romance

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

9 December 1983 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Jentl  »

Box Office

Budget:

$12,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$30,400,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| (Dolby Magnetic 35mm prints)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Norma Atallah, who played the Vishkower family maid, was also Barbra Streisand's stand-in. Streisand had her memorize Yentl's lines and play them while she was setting shots. See more »

Goofs

When Yentl sings "Papa, Can You Hear Me?" her glasses are laid down in front of her. They have modern temple and ear pieces. In other scenes Yentl's glasses are the old-fashioned, wrap-around-the-ear-style glasses. See more »

Quotes

Bookseller: You're in the wrong place, storybooks for women are over here.
Yentl: [holding a book] I'd like this one, please.
Bookseller: [takes the book away] Sacred books are for men.
Yentl: Why?
Bookseller: It's the law.
Yentl: Where's it written?
Bookseller: It doesn't matter where it's written, it's the law.
Yentl: Well if it's the law it must be written somewhere, perhaps in here
[the book]
Yentl: . I'll take it.
See more »

Crazy Credits

At the very end of the closing credits: This film is dedicated to my father... and to all our fathers. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Saturday Night Live: Jerry Seinfeld/David Bowie (1999) See more »

Soundtracks

Papa, Can You Hear Me?
Music by Michel Legrand
Lyrics by Alan Bergman and Marilyn Bergman
Performed by Barbra Streisand
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

A TREMENDOUS ACHIEVEMENT
29 September 2004 | by (tampa bay, florida) – See all my reviews

Reading the few awfully and derogatorily negative reviews for this film here on the IMDb, it still befuddles me about the total oppression and negativity that people throw out of their mouths without expressing themselves in a more precise and intelligent manner, mainly on a film that presents such important issues and social commentaries. Even though the film is set in the past, all it says is still very noteworthy and easy to relate to in the past few decades and definitely in the decades to come.

YENTL is a film to be shared and enjoyed regardless of ethnicity, religion or background. Its universality speaks and raises voices to different generations and social groups.

Motivational, moving and exquisitely shot with rich period flavor and mood (AND THIS IS WITHOUT HAVING SEEN THE DVD YET, SINCE IT IS NOT AVAILABLE, AND MS. STREISAND HERSELF NOTED THAT THE COLOR TINT ON THE VHS TAPE IS INCORRECT, SOMETHING SHE HAD CORRECTED FOR THE UPCOMING DVD), this is the type of story about conquering your fears and stop at nothing to achieve your dreams that is fatally missing from films in our present time.

If there is an aspect to this movie that is the most formidable, it's the music and songs in it that's what is most successful about it, since they carry the story as it progresses through its tale of passion, love, struggle and perseverance.

Ignorance has kept the film from being enjoyed and appreciated by several groups and individuals. Hopefully someday they will find the courage and wit to understand such incredible gem.

"NOTHING'S IMPOSSIBLE"


53 of 83 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
'Yentl' is why I ignore the Oscars trob226
Barbra Streisand was WAY to old to play a teenage girl kedem524
the movie is fantastic and so is the book pudwhacker
When is the DVD coming out? matoschi
New Convert eavey
Richard Gere turned down the Avigdor role vegwriter
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