Extraordinary Days Require Exceptional Invitations

The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz

The movie, starring Richard Dreyfuss
  • The comedy “The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz” tells about a very bad Bar Mitzvah photographer, the kind you don’t want for your simcha! It is a wonderful movie with hillarious scenes about Bar Mitzvah videography. Have you seen it?
  • The story takes place at post World War II Montreal. Duddy is the younger son of a working-class Jewish family in Montreal. He yearns to make a name for himself in society. He is determined to make it big – whatever it is, whatever it takes. The film chronicles his short and dubious rise to power, as well as his changing relationships with family and friends. Along the way the film explores the themes of anti-semitism and the responsibilities which come with adulthood.

    The book, by Mordecai Richler
  • The Doc’s favorite part of the movie is when Duddy joins Mr. Friar, a film director of dubious achievements, and sets up a company to film weddings and bar-mitzvahs. Their first production, “Happy Bar-Mitzvah, Bernie!” is an abrasive home-movie that cross-cuts between shots of middle-class bar-mitzvah, shots of Zulu rites and other strange scenes! However, realizing the obvious faultiness of the film, Duddy does not talk candidly to his client. Instead, he untruthfully says that the film is a phenomenal piece of art and that he is entering it into the Cannes Festival.
  • Even though Duddy Kravitz is a back stabbing crook, who has every right to be despised, you will end up loving him! The reason is Richard Dreyfuss, who plays Duddy’s character. He makes Duddy an attractive figure, bursting with chutzpah. Dreyfuss is the heart and soul of this movie.
  • The movie is based on Mordecai Richler’s book, The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz. Doctor Simcha read it as part of her High School English Literature class. Since then she has read it every autumn for many years! It just fits those windy autumn nights. The film and the novel are great to curl up with! .
  • Mordecai Richler, the novelist, and Lionel Chetwynd, who adapted the book to cinema, were Academy Award 1974 nominees for “Best Adapted Screenplay”. They lost to Coppola’s and Puzo’s “The Godfather Part II”.

    T-Shirt !
  • And to think that director Ted Kotcheff later directed the first “Rambo” movie!
  • Awards:
    • Berlin International Film Festival – “Golden Bear Award”.
    • Canadian Film Awards – “Film of the Year”.
    • Writers Guild of America Award for Best Comedy Adapted from Another Medium – (Mordecai Richler & Lionel Chetwynd).
    • MasterWorks recipient 2002 (video clip), honoured by the Audio-Visual Preservation Trust of Canada.