Isaac in America: A Journey with Isaac Bashevis Singer
Director: Amram Nowak
When asked about the sad fate of Yiddish, I.B. Singer acknowledges that the language â€śhas been dying for 200 years . . .since it was born.â€ť But he adds: â€śThere are four billion people on earth. In 100 years, there will be 100 billion. And they will all need subjects for Ph.C. theses.â€ť The worldâ€™s foremost Yiddish author, and winner of the 1978 Novel Prize in Literature, is the subject of this wonderfully intimate portrait. Welcoming us to his overstuffed study, Singer assures us: â€śChaos is not really ugly. Before God said, â€ślet there be light,â€ť there was chaos.â€ť
Isaac In America recalls the authorâ€™s earliest memories of Warsaw and his early adulthood in the Coney Island section of Brooklyn, where he sought refuge from the Nazis in 1935. Singer visits some of the last vestiges of Jewish immigrant culture in New York: the Garden Cafeterias (once frequented by Trotsky and soon to become a Chinese restaurant), and the offices of the Yiddish newspaper, The Forward. â€śIt should have folded 50 years ago, but its bookkeepers are too old and half-blind, they donâ€™t know they
are bankrupt.â€ť Here is a man in whom talent and originality are matched by warmth, humor and generosity. It is an unbeatable combination.
Playing with and proceeding Spark Among the Ashes.
- Documentary Feature
- 1987, Sundance Film Festival
- U.S.A., 58 min.