The Pawnbroker
The Pawnbroker (1965)

"The Pawnbroker" is the dark exploration into the soul of a man who is tortured by the unbearable pain of his past. In order to most effectively reveal his character, rather than relying on a traditional plot sequence, the film… More

Directed By:
Rated: Unrated
Running Time:
Release Date: April 20, 1965
DVD Release Date: December 16, 2003
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Critic Score: 100% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Nathan Rabin
The Dissolve

The Pawnbroker is a paradoxically obsessed with death, yet roaring with life, a jazzy urban tragedy that sees shadows of the Holocaust in the suffering and exploitation of the dead-eyed souls of East Harlem.

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Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

An unpleasant, solemn and overwrought melodrama about an embittered Jewish Holocaust survivor still haunted by his stay in Auschwitz.

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Dan Jardine

The film makes its point with narrative economy and emotional sophistication in a socially complex contemporary context.

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Emanuel Levy

One of the first Hollywood films to deal with the Holocaust, The Pawnbroker is thematically and stylistically innovative, borrowing some of its devices from the French New Wave, such as brief flashbacks, stylized b/w imagery, and jazzy score.

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John A. Nesbit
Old School Reviews

creates some haunting images and gives Rod Steiger a chance to blossom

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Dan Jardine
All Movie Guide

Dramatizes the psychological impact of the Nazi concentration camps, while drawing parallels to contemporary conditions of New York City ghetto life

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More reviews for The Pawnbroker

Flixster Audience Score: 89% Flixster User Reviews
Ken Stachnik
An amazingly acted & directed punch to the gut. Check out Ralph Rosenblum's great book for a look at the editing of this picture. It's called,… More
Alec Barniskis
Perhaps one of the few films about the legacy of the Holocaust, that is entirely focused on despair and emptiness . . . that being said, I get the feeling that… More
Michael Gildea
A movie equally depressing and amazing. Early Lumet is incredible.
Marcus Woolcott
Fine work from Lumet, but even finer work from Steiger
John Ballantine
Steiger is wonderful as an emotional (and physical) survivor attempting some degree of normal after being through horror. A hit for Lumet.
Simeon Deutsch
A dramatic, remarkable, worthy directorial successor to 12 Angry Men from Sidney Lumet and Rodney Steiger in one of the greatest performances of all time.… More