Sunday, November 15, 2015

Leo Fuchs: I Want To Be A Boarder (1937)

This short clip showcases the comic talents of Leo Fuchs in this 1937 Yiddish film, Ikh Vil Zayn a Boarder (15 minutes), which is produced & directed by Joseph Seiden. Here he sings the song, “Trouble.”

The National Center for Jewish Film at Brandeis University in Waltham, Mass., writes:
A small classic of Yiddish absurdism (made from outtakes from the Joseph Seiden feature I Want to Be a Mother) showcases Leo Fuchs' comic virtuosity. Fuchs and Yetta Zwerling play a husband and wife who seek to reignite their marriage by pretending to be landlady and tenant in a flurry of comic role-reversals.

Restoration was completed with funding from the American Film Institute, National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities and the Massachusetts Council for the Arts and Humanities.
Fuchs, a Polish-born Jewish actor, was born into a Yiddish theatrical family; he had a talent to make people laugh—as this short clip shows. In an obituary in The Independent, Bernard Mendelovitch writes the following about this actor-comedian:
Fuchs was rubber-faced and practically double-jointed. He could make his body do the most incredible contortions while playing the violin behind his back and screwing up his face until it was quite unrecognisable; but he always pulled himself up to his full height to make a handsome, smiling exit. He enjoyed equal success when playing a season of classical drama with the Maurice Schwartz Arts Theatre in New York, and featured in many Yiddish films, notably I Want to be a Mother, The American Matchmaker and a number of comedy two-reelers.
Leo Fuchs was born in 1911 in Warsaw; he died in Los Angeles in 1994.

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