Yentl (1983)

PG  |   |  Drama, Musical, Romance  |  6 January 1984 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 9,071 users  
Reviews: 64 user | 16 critic

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



(screenplay), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 5 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »



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


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 All (53) »


In a time when the world of study belonged only to men, there lived a girl who dared to ask why? See more »


Drama | Musical | Romance


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

6 January 1984 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Йентл  »

Box Office


$12,000,000 (estimated)


$30,400,000 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| (Dolby Magnetic 35mm prints)



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Yentl's character was meant to be a 17 year old girl, Barbra was 41 when she played her. See more »


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 »


Tailor: A tailor's like a doctor, what's to be ashamed?
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 »


Referenced in Mystery Science Theater 3000: Gamera vs. Zigra (1991) See more »


Where Is It Written?
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

Classic Still!
17 February 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Just watched the movie on our local PBS-TV here in Bflo., N.Y. tonight. (Fri., Feb. 17, 2006.) Have seen it several times before, the 1st when it was released in 1983, the year my own father died.

With Streisand dedicating the film to her dad, who she never knew, that, the music & story deeply reached me at the time & still does. Coupled with this, I was assigned by Billboard Magazine to interview composer Michele LeGrand here when he was appearing with the Bflo. Philharmoic Orchestra. I'd always admired his dream-like work, like "Windmills of My Mind" & "What are You Doing the Rest of Your Life?" I learned he was working on a film with Barbra & it turned out to be "Yentl." I was thrilled when I later saw the movie & heard the score. Streisand should have been recognized for her directing abilities with an Oscar nomination. OUTRAGEOUS! But then, her film can still touch us & that is worth more than ANY Oscar! Thanks Barb ...

18 of 31 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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