The Pawnbroker [Blu-ray]
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Top Customer Reviews
As a vicious menacing crime figure, Brock Peters is also superb--the present-day reminder to Nazerman of how evil never dies. Other cast members include Geraldine Fitzgerald as a sympathetic caseworker and Jaime Sanchez as Nazerman's young Latino assistant who is of another generation and another culture, and cannot understand his boss' terrible anguish.
Director Sidney Lumet has done an outstanding job here conveying the lifelong suffering that horrific evil brings with it. This is not a graphic film, but one that delivers its message before the days of special effects via pure drama. It is a great thing to have this now available on DVD; this is a film that should be seen by those who treasure phenomenal acting and powerful emotion.
Very highly recommended; the best American film of 1965 and one of the best American films of the 20th century.
It is not a kid's movie, as I can well attest. Nor is it the sort of treatment on the Holocaust that we have come to expect. This isn't a film focused on the suffering of the concentration camp victims, but on life after such a horrible event, and the pain that always accompanies any engagement in life. The pawnbroker, Nazerman, having survived the camps, has decided he has felt enough pain in his life and refuses to feel anything for anyone again. He has a pawnshop in Harlem, lives with his sister's family in Long Island, dutifully visits the sick brother of one of his friends who didn't survive (while sleeping with his friend's widow)--and never emotionally interacts with any of them. Oddly enough (and deliberately, too, for the novelist who wrote this story meant it as a Christian allegory), his remoteness causes his clients to treat him as a Christ-figure; they bring him not just the junk they need to pawn, but their hopes and fears and griefs, and an aching desire for sympathy.
The action is a continuing round of efforts--by his assistant Jesus, by the social worker, by the pimp who uses his shop to launder money, and by the customers he trades with--to break through the armor plating the pawnbroker uses to keep the world and its pain at bay.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Extremely painful and mournful movie. Rod Steigers acting is so, so intense, and his character portrayed is so stone-cold virtually dead of human emotion due to what he lived... Read morePublished 8 days ago by Pesach
Truly an amazing piece of cinema. Masterpiece. Flawless acting. Wonderful plot. An awesome way to tell a story through editing of flashbacks in the main focus of the present day. Read morePublished 16 days ago by Seeking New Things
A man escapes the Nazi concentration camp, but is haunted by his past because the Nazis destroyed his life, leaving him an empty shell.Published 4 months ago by Kyzyl