To Be or Not to Be

To Be or Not to Be

Director: Alan Johnson Cast: Mel Brooks, Anne Bancroft, Charles Durning
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To Be or Not to Be

Mel Brooks and his real-life wife Anne Bancroft play Frederick and Anna Bronski, musical comedy stars in 1939 Poland. The highlight of the Bronskis' act is Frederick's imitation of Adolf Hitler, but he is forced to eliminate this turn for fear of offending the Nazis. Meanwhile, Anna enters into a harmless flirtation with Polish bomber pilot Andre Sobinski (Tim Matheson). The pilot's nightly signal to visit Anna in her dressing room is "To Be or Not to Be," spoken by Bronski during the Shakespearean portion of his act. When the Germans march into Warsaw, the Bronskis and the rest of their troupe are forced into hiding (notably the homosexual Lupinski, played by Lewis J. Stadlen, who is forced to endure the humiliation of wearing a pink star). Flying for the Polish resistance in England, Sobinski asks kindly Professor Seletzky (Jose Ferrer) to deliver his "To Be or Not to Be" message to Anna. When Seletzky doesn't seem to recognize the name of Anne Bronski, Warsaw's biggest star, Sobinski suspects that something is amiss. Sure enough, Seletzky is a Nazi spy, heading to Warsaw to help Col. "Concentration Camp" Ehrhardt (Oscar-nominated Charles Durning) destroy the underground movement. Parachuting into Poland, Sobinski enlists the aid of the Bronski troupe to foil the Nazis. What follows is an uproarious series of disguises and deceptions, capped by Bronski's impersonation of Der Fuhrer.

Product Details

Release Date: 09/05/2006
UPC: 0024543167310
Original Release: 1983
Rating: PG
Source: 20th Century Fox
Region Code: 1
Time: 1:47:00
Sales rank: 5,082

Special Features

Closed Caption; Behind-the-scenes making of featurette; Character profiles and interviews with Mel Brooks, Anne Bancroft and Charles Durning

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Mel Brooks Frederick Bronski
Anne Bancroft Anna Bronski
Charles Durning Col. Erhardt
Tim Matheson Lt. Andre Sobinski
José Ferrer Prof. Siletski
Christopher Lloyd Capt. Schultz
George Gaynes Ravitch
George Wyner Ratkowski
Jack Riley Dobish
Lewis J. Stadlen Lupinski
Ronny Graham Sondheim
James Haake and Scamp Sasha and Mutki
Raymond Skipp RAF Flight Sergeant
Robin Haynes Actor
Estelle Reiner Gruba
Zale Kessler Bieler
Earl Boen Dr. Boyarski
Ivor Barry Gen. Hobbs
William Glover Maj. Cunningham
John Francis British Intelligence Aide
Max Brooks Her Son
Henry Kaiser Gestapo Officer
George Caldwell Gestapo Guard
Wolf Muser Desk Sergeant
Henry Brandon Nazi Officer
John McKinney Elite Guard Officer
Eda Reiss Merin Frightened Jewish Woman
Phil Adams Airport Sentry
Curt Lowens Airport Officer
Ron Kuhlman Polish Flier
John Otrin Polish Flier
Blane Savage Polish Flier
Ron Diamond Pub Bartender
Paddi Edwards Pub Waitress
Terence Marsh Startled British Officer
Scott Beach Narrator
Leeyan Granger Lady
Ian Bruce Klotskis Klown
Spencer Henderson Klotskis Klown
Tucker Smith Klotskis Klown

Technical Credits
Alan Johnson Director
Alan Balsam Editor
Mel Brooks Producer
Gene S. Cantamessa Sound Mixer
Craig Edgar Set Decoration/Design
Ronny Graham Screenwriter
Gerald Hirschfeld Cinematographer
Joe Hubbard Set Decoration/Design
Howard Jeffrey Executive Producer
Terence Marsh Production Designer
Thomas Meehan Screenwriter
John Morris Score Composer
Charlene Painter Choreography
Irene Walzer Associate Producer
Dennis Washington Art Director,Production Designer
Albert Wolsky Costumes/Costume Designer

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- To Be or Not to Be
1. Main Titles [:02]
2. The Bronsky Theatre [2:06]
3. A Secret Admirer [5:42]
4. Naughty Nazis [:36]
5. An Assignation [4:37]
6. It's War! [1:07]
7. Messages to Poland [8:06]
8. Something Is Wrong [4:14]
9. Nazi Headquarters [2:59]
10. Sweetheart [:16]
11. The Gestapo [7:45]
12. Another Siletski [1:17]
13. Sasha [5:14]
14. Back to Nazi H.Q. [:08]
15. An Imposter [2:45]
16. A Command Performance [5:15]
17. Another Suitor [7:02]
18. At the Airport [2:41]
19. Is This England? [6:09]
20. End Titles [:52]

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To Be or Not to Be 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
I haven't seen the original To Be or Not To Be Movie that starred Jack Benny yet but back in the 80's when I was a teenager I watched this Mel Brooks remake and though not my favorite of his movies I thought it was good and I enjoyed watching it and thought that Mel Brooks and his wife Anne Bancroft were both superb! I recently bought the Mel Brooks DVD boxset collection and this is one of the movies in the set and I'm glad to own it!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago