Yentl

Yentl

For me Yentl is the greatest Streisand movie ever, also the greatest movie soundtrack. Why? I don't know what it is about Yentl but I just love it, when she sings the opening number were is it written I'm just transfixed until the end, and finishing with a piece of sky just leaves me absolutely drained.
An amazing movie, yes I know Barbra has made many great movies but for me this is the greatest, I know a lot of people will have their own personal favourites but i just thought I'd put this topic up for discussion to see what the response would be, thanks for taking the time to read it xxxx

John.

Replies for this Forum Topic

That movie has really grown on me over the years. When I first saw it in a theater about 25 years ago I was not in the right frame of mind to completely enjoy it because I was distracted by some traumatic personal issues.

I revisited it some years later when I bought the VHS and I became completely entranced with it. Yentl is now my second favorite Streisand movie after Funny Girl. It's visually stunning, with a riveting storyline and the music is magnificent. It just keeps improving with age.

I also feel that it has much larger, more resonant message than the simple plot. It's a deeply empowering movie for people.

Hi, I heard about the movie Yentl for the first time about ten years ago. It was at high school and our English teacher showed us a video tape. However, it had no subtitles and our English turned out to be too bad to watch a movie without at least English subtitles. I think we saw the first 15 minutes and then she turned it off.

After almost ten years, a few days ago, I had the chance to watch the movie again. My English improved a lot so this time I was able to watch it in English...and I fell in love Smiling It touched me so much. I was really impressed. Singer´s story is great, the music is really nice ( I still have one of the songs in my head ) and it was also funny for me to see Prague being Lublin and Cesky Krumlov the city where the yeshiva was. The plot might seem simple but I like stories like this - about strong women which fight for their future despite the conditions they have to face.

I must say that whenever I don´t feel like going to my early morning classes, I will remember Yentl and her passion for studying and then hurry up to school Smiling . In my country it hasn´t always been like today when everybody can study. Yet twenty years ago it was more important there to be in the right politic party than to be gifted and skilled. Now we are free to study if we are good enough. For me this story is also a kind of memento - it remembers me how lucky I am!!!

Well, enough, enough Smiling

I just wanted to say thank you because for me it was one of the strongest movies I have ever seen and I trully enjoyed it. Really good piece of work!!!

Katy, excited fan from the Czech Republic Smiling

Wow,Katy I'm impressed by your post.
Prague looks so beautifull in the movie, I love the colours.
Yentl inspired me too, to be a big Barbra-fan!

I can't tell which I love more, the movie or the sound track of the movie. Or maybe it's the story, or the fact that Yentl is so smart, or the spark that is there between Yentl and Avigdor, or the fact that Yentl is able to let go of her dreams and starts all over again or maybe it's just te colours, or...

anyway I totally agree with John, about Yentl being the greatest Barbra movie up till now.

greetings,

Simone

I think Yentl is fantastic because it is so unique in its storyline, composition, lighting, historically accurate sets, internal monologues portrayed through musical numbers and more.

The casting of Mandy Patinkin was of course brilliant (Barbra does have a good track record when it comes to choosing leading actors) and the characters in the film were anything but one-dimensional.

The soundtrack is so incredibly strong that it stands on its own as an album telling the whole story of the film, without even seeing it, while at the same time the songs can almost all of them be appreciated individually. And it does include the most powerful and emotional vocals of Barbra's entire career, I believe.

I have listened to A piece of sky endlessly over the years and it still grows on me as I get older and hopefully wiser. Those kind of songs are few and far apart.

Well, thanks, Simone. I was really impressed by the movie ( and I still am ) Smiling

Prague has changed a lot since 1983 - it is no more grey and dark, all the ancient houses are reconstructed but on the other hand - it doesn´t have that atmosphere any more - the centre is overcrowded and there are souvenir shops in almost every of the old houses. Sad
The other town - Cesky Krumlov - is really beutiful. The castle has been recently reconstructed and if you like hiking, biking and especially canoeing, you will feel there like in a paradise.

I haven´t seen many movies with B.S. If I remember well, it has been Prince of Tide ( I didn´t like it ) and What´s up, Doc? ( it was OK but still nothing special to me but my parents love it ).

Katy

Yes, Yentl!

Its a great film... and the music is extraordinary. Romantic with thought-provoking questions such as... "Where is it written?". Some really funny moments and perfectly directed, cast, and acted...

But again... THE MUSIC! AND BARBRA'S VOICE!

One of the best movie soundtracks ever.

I was so thrilled to finally buy this movie on DVD and get the Director's cut!

Thank G-d you can't wear out DVDs because this one would surely get that way. I've owned the soundtrack for years.

I wrote a book and it's being published as we speak, and I made sure I included some real life dialogue that happened between me and my daughter. I used to play Barbra's CDs all the time even when my daughter protested, saying she hated it. Years later, I caught her singing along to one of the songs and I said, "See? You DO like this music! You know the lyrics!"

She replied, "Only because you subjected me to that crap the entire time I was growing up!"

Now that she's a mom she says she likes Ms. Streisand's music.

Go figure.

Thanks for Yentl. One of my favoritest [is that a word?] movies EVER!

All I can say about Yentl is that Barbra Streisand got totally ripped off at oscar time for everything. Directing, acting , music!!!

Really great to read all yourcomments on Yentl and I'm glad so many people love it as much as I do, and I agree with northshore that she was ripped of for not getting the oscar for that amazing movie, as well as a few others she should have won, but as far as I'm concerned Barbra will always be a winner, no one can compare to her amazing talent, was great to see and hear he in We are the world 25...... love you Babs xxxxx

Every time I watch YENTL I see something new in it. First of all, the music is just overwhelming; the lush sounds of Legrande framing the story told by the Bergmans. I mean, aren't they the absolute BEST ? Secondly, I loved Nehemiah Persoff as her Papa; he portrayed the kind of father we'd all love to have...sensitive, kind, warm, somewhat stern but loving, a teacher, someone to guide us even after passing on...I cannot see this film without tears welling up, knowing how much Barbra missed by NOT knowing her natural father. Her pain and loss are exquisitely expressed as she sings "Papa, can you hear me ? " while alone in the forest. At the end, when she sings "A Piece of Sky" we feel Yentl's newfound strength and determination to find the kind of life she desires. It's just the beginning for her, and she's learned SO MUCH, sharing her journey with us throughout the entire film.
Finally, I'm in complete awe of her amazing gift as a singer of songs that are conversational, that tell a story, and that reach new heights with every note. This work was done with passion, commitment and joy, and it shows in every frame. I've introduced many a friend to this particular film and the reactions are ALWAYS quite positive...thank you, Barbra, for sharing your heart with us !
Fran from NJ

**************************** 4/2010
ATTENTION BARBRA:
****************************

Re-release 'YENTL'

Seriously. Now is the time.

Yentl?
It is a part of my life, it´s under my skin and in the deepest corners of my mind. I believe there are others with the same experience, but I watched the creation of Yentl and I even "participated with my tiny little bit". I was a citizen of the Czech Republic - the place where the exteriors were filmed. I was only 18 and this experience formed my life for the next decade.
Being an absolute and crazy fan at that time (1982) I had the privilege to watch the director and her hard work - I watched everything I could see admiringly, loyaly and with awe, because Barbra was so serious at times, absorbed by making her greatest project come true.
If I like the film? It is not possible to answer the question by simple yes, because I lived it and it is for me like a story that happened to someone next to me and than I saw it in on the screene and it was more realistic than in my memory, it was and is alive whenever I watch the film.
Today I found an unreleased bit of Yentl on you tube and I was shocked - there is another glimpse of me - 18 year old - almost 30 years has passed...
I am a new member in this site and this is the first time I write and post something on the internet, I prefer reading and watching the others instead. But today I cannot be silent anymore. I want to share what I had a chance to see and live for more than a month with others interested or with the same experience.
I am shy to speak to Barbra directly here, as I was when I had a chance to talk to her then. But - One BIG thank you Barbra for being an absolutely irreplaceable part in my life and thank you for Yentl - after the years nothing has changed for me.

My wife and I want to send our heartfelt appreciation to Barbra for expending the effort to bring us the Director's Extended Edition dvd. We thoroughly enjoyed watching and hearing what she went through to bring us one of our favorite film experiences. Thank You Barbra for not only this but all that you have given us to enjoy.

I agree about the Oscar rip off! Everyone across America knew that night that it belonged to Streisand- it was a total slap in the face. All across the nation people were "pissed off". (at least everyone I knew felt that way and their friends and so on) Remember the protests? Then they tried to fix it by having her present the first female director's Oscar last time. (Not to take away from the winner, but I think a lot of people wanted to pull a "Kanye" move and give it back to Streisand!) Actually, I tried watching "The Hurt Locker" but I fell asleep 3 times and woke up and it was still on!! I never fell asleep once with Yentl! And i'm in the military so I thought I could relate to "the Hurt Locker! It just cracks me up when they try to go back and fix something years later- like when the Actor's Studio gave Streisand that paper saying she was an "Honorary member" over 40 years later! It was so funny, cause it looked like Streisand put the paper under her water glass that was on the table during the interview! (sorry, I notice little things like that). Why can't we do the right thing the first time around? The Screen Actor's Studio was a really good interview though- I wish the dvd had the whole 5 hours. I love her interviews when she speaks candidly without the interviewer constantly interrupting her thoughts. I wish they would also release the HOB special "Making of the Broadway Album" on dvd- because I love the interview parts. That Lipton guy is a great interviewer, so is Larry King, some of these journalist/interviewers are so awestruck by her talent they cant get past asking dumb questions. (sometimes I wonder if she is thinking I cant believe these stupid questions?) I think a lot of them already come into the interview with their own agenda thus the interview goes out of the window immediately....

I bought the DVD of Yentl. The film plays fine, but the extra disc won't play. Wonder if I could get my money back.Would love to see those extras.

Love,
Chip

ohhhh Yentl..... the reason i do what i do now Smiling I first watched yentl when i was about 11 yrs old (im now 39), and for an 11yr old to be into it wasnt something my friends knew about Eye-wink But i would watch it over and over again, saying all her script and singing all her songs by heart...... (careful now i sound like a stalker!) I even had her album for the film on my 'walkman' and would often go for walks in the country side belting out all her songs and feeling all her emotions. I miss that...
Now i teach drama and can only dream of ever meeting her in person, but alas i shall just continue to sing her songs when on my own at home....(especially the bath...ace acoustics) ...."where is it written what it is im meant to be...."....

I find it strange that it seems the academy will only give her oscars for singing, or best song etc- always something to do with her being a "singer", not an actress, producer or director. It's like they dont want to acknowledge her other talents besides singing. I hate that. What are they so threatened by?

Yentl was the 3rd film i saw with ms. Streisand in it. AND it was amazing...by ending that movie with the song A piece of sky just completely makes it, that song is totally inspiring and now i am literally telling people don't only settle for a piece of sky and they're like what the heck because my generation doesn't know real legends like ms. Streisand. Its depressing because i'm 13 and no one at my school knows who she is. Its like when i grow up into an adult none of the adults will know who she is either, PEOPLE EXPOSE YOUR CHILDREN TO QUALITY.

Nataline

AttachmentSize
90s pic 5.jpg53.87 KB

I have just seen the DVD version with the commentary.
Barbra opened my eyes. I love Rembrandt, chiaroscuro – his special technique, the play of light and shades and dark – there is so much of it, it is so beautiful and gives the film another dimension.
Next are the colours. I know the exteriors, the old towns and houses, they were decaying and often ugly. The film makes them look beautiful and sometimes mysterious.
The film is a gigantic piece of work and it brings never ending pleasure. I have seen it so many times and still find new things in it.
It surely deserved nominations and awards in every film category. But first of all it was Barbra´s idea and her vision brought to reality – so if there was something like a fan Oscar nomination Barbra would have to make a special place for them Eye-wink

Yes, Rembrandt's Chiaroscuro (juxtaposition of light and shade) is very beautiful. I love it. I can stare at his work all day. (I also like Edward Hopper's use of light in his paintings.) Did you know in Rembrandt's time, studying under the Masters, that they had to draw the anatomy and body parts for 7 years before they were ever allowed to paint a portrait or a painting? That's why they were so good. AND, they had to mix their own pigments for the paint, so they learned the color wheel spectrum very well.

Barbra did an outstanding job with her screenshots. I am also wondering about who did her storyboards for the movie- or if she uses them. ( I think I saw one once somewhere). Barbra is a master at manipulating light. I think the woman is brilliant.
You know, if you look back at her in the early days, she was always filming stuff, (home movies), or tinkering with lenses, or cameras and stuff on pictures I have seen. Plus, with her houses, always designing. So, it doesn't surprise me at all that she would write books on designing houses or architecture- it's all the same thing really;
directing, designing, being able to see the vision of something in your head from start to finish. I would think that you have to work very close with your editor too, I mean, I would think that the editor would have to understand the vision of the director or they (the editor) could jack it up right? The editing process kind of intrigues me too. I love the way Yentl was edited.

Yentl is so close to my heart, because every little thing was researched and I know it was a labor of love for her. I sort of wish Yentl had a sequel so we could see what happened to her- but then, on second thought, No. It's better to imagine what Yentl may have become, and the second could in no way top the first- could it?

BTW, Streisand DID receive an award from us for Yentl. It was a miniature Oscar, and the inscription said: "Presented to Barbra Streisand from her fans for Yentl"

Barbra deserved the real thing no doubt and our hearts were just as broken when she didn't get it, but at least we tried to show how we feel too.

Hi, normally I don't watch musicals at all. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy my music, but for some reason I just cringe when I'm watching a movie and someone breaks out in song.

But, I happened on Yentl tonight and I couldn't stop watching. What a wonderful work of art it is - the final scene literally brought me to tears. Anyway, I was so moved by the film that I felt compelled to find a place to express how I felt.

Bravo

Dear Ms. Streisand,

I hope that you would be able to read this, as I only joined this site just to contact you. I don't normally write to celebrities, but I had to find a way to connect. I just finished watching your movie, “Yentl” and it made me cry. As a young girl, when my mother told me that the Jewish people were God’s special people I felt jealous. I was always close to God and when I left Trinidad to go to Canada to study, I did a course in Judaism. I learned more about the Jewish faith and also that young girls and boys can attend a special school and at twelve years old they can have a Bat or Bar Mitzvah. I wish that I could have done that. Your movie really touched me, especially the song at the end. Who knows? Maybe someday I can attend a school to learn more about the Torah and Talmud and maybe my children can too.
Thank you,
C

I had to watch this movie numerous times to get Barbra's message. At first, I did not like it at all. I must say that it is a great piece of art. I hope that we all can reach beyond that piece of sky.

I was recently able to aquire from the Yentl film photograher all the transparencies, and 35 mm slides, photos, negtives, proofs, and correspondences from UA/MGM and more of this wonderful film. I have the sepia slides of the wedding pictures, pictures of the crew after production, and more. It is unbelievable.....

It was truly an honor to have all this brought back from the UK to the United States, where I feel it needed to belong. I had them recently stored in another place for safekeeping, but I don't have the knowledge regarding how to preserve it.

Yentl is a part of American Film making history, and I have got to get it to a film museum of some sort for preservation, and posterity. The guy was breaking the set up piece by piece, and I had aquired a couple of pieces at first to see if it was real. Then when I saw it, my heart stopped. I felt I had to stop the collection from being pieced out and get it back to the USA. To me, this movie was as important in American filmaking history as "Citizen Cane", because of the struggles Ms. Streisand had to go through to get this film made, because of the barriers, glass ceilings she had to break through in the 80's, and because of the research and cinematography etc. I feel that this property should belong only to Ms. Streisand, and/or her film company, as this was her passion project for so many years. I would even GIVE it to her if she wants it- not even to sell, this is how much I believe that it should belong to her, and be preserved, or loan it to a film museum if she didn't want it.

So, Barbra is you see this, it's yours.. but maybe you would let me keep ONE transparency? Okay, maybe three? lol I love this film so much, it's like a part of me too, and I really want the right thing to be done by it. Maybe one day, i'll be able to get it back to her.

So Craig,
just a thought, maybe you can forward my above post to B, just so she knows about the collection and that it is here back in the states, if she ever wants it back, we all know how important Yentl was to her. Thanx!

I´m a Colombian Director... I just signed in... where can I send a personal comment to THE ONE Barbra? Is there a personal E-MAIL? Thank you. This is the most inspinig film and life for my career... thank u again... I need some advise!

Great music through out this whole movie. I'm happy that Barbra played that daring girl. I'm hoping for my concert at my school that we can do some of the music from this movie because it's brilliant and it has meaning behind every word.

Sincerely

Alyssia Kangas

***************************************
ATTENTION BARBRA

***************************************

RE-RELEASE 'YENTL'

Everyone's doing it... Lucas and Spielberg did it and more recently Cameron.

With 'The War On Women'
Now is the time.

Truely a role that cannot be done by anouther actress in this buisness. One of a kind.

I agree that "Yentl" is a great story, music, and film. I always wondered what became of "Yentl" once she got to the USA. For me, a sequel would be most appropriate.
I sent a note to Ms. Streisand's manager years ago with that suggestion.

Great idea!As I know the communistic government did not give a permit to make Yentl movie in Poland, so therefore it was made in Czechoslovakia(who knows something more about that,please, contact me), Prague was Lublin etc.So, maybe in the new movie retrospective could be made in Poland, Lublin and Lublin area, where there are original "old stones"? And new idea: Mrs Streisand would be the best director for Singer`s "Magician of Lublin".I have seen "Magician of Lublin" as the theatre musical in Poland in Jewish Theatre in Warsaw and in the other theatre with the participation of Jewish Theatre actors.Both - great!

I'm watching for the first time tonight....Amazing! This movie is wonderful! Funny Girl is my favorite tho, but I haven;t gotten through all her films. I'll be 42 years old next month and never paid attention to this woman with the most amazing acting talent, a magical voice!

This movie is one of my favorite movies. I love the story.... I love love. I love her love for him in the movie. She was great. I also love the soundtracks for this movie. My favorite is the way he makes me feel and no wonder.

First i wantto say how much admiration for you madame Streisand. You know, it is rare to assist a cumulation of talents like you: first, singer, actress, comedian. You are the truly continuation of the voices of America, before you was , i think your équal in talent, Judy Garland.
About Yentl, for me it is a reference of what will be the summit of your voice. The music of Legrand serve you well to accomplish this document And legacy for next générations of admirera like me. I am profondly certain that Yentl will be recognize as a true legacy of your talent and a prof of how outsandding and powerfull and pure voice you are. This film is , for me, the accomplishent of you career, And i dont see nobody who Can be serious enough to try sing the music of Yentl, may be one day....!