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NEW Yoo Hoo Mrs. Goldberg (DVD)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Gertrude Berg, Betty Walker, Roberta Wallach, Lewis Berg
  • Directors: Aviva Kempner
  • Producers: Aviva Kempner
  • Format: NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada This DVD will probably NOT be viewable in other countries. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 2
  • MPAA Rating: NR
  • Studio: Universal Studios Home Entertainment
  • Release Date: Aug. 24 2010
  • Run Time: 92 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #90,842 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)
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Product Description

Product Description

Before Oprah, and before Lucy, there was the beloved Gertrude Berg, the entertainment genius who wrote, starred in and produced the first successful American sitcom and charmed a beleaguered nation. Animated through a dazzling collage of vintage clips and interviews, behind-the-scenes footage and intimate conversations with friends, colleagues and family members, the box-office smash-hit YOO-HOO, MRS. GOLDBERG traces Berg's rise to stardom from her childhood in New York to her early radio days in "The Rise of the Goldbergs" (1929-46) to her enormously influential sitcom, The Goldbergs (1949-56), which brought Berg the first Best Actress Emmy® in history. Berg's passion and incredible productivity paved the way for a wide variety of causes-women in entertainment, Jewish-American identity and actors' rights, to name a few-but she is most celebrated for singlehandedly proving that the American family transcends social, religious and economic divisions. Aviva Kempner's critically acclaimed YOO-HOO, MRS. GOLDBERG offers a humorous, captivating tribute to one of the most successful and innovative women in American broadcasting history.

BONUS MATERIAL INCLUDES: - Audio commentary with the director - Gertrude Berg's guest appearances with Edward R. Murrow, Ed Sullivan and Steve Allen - Additional scenes and interviews - Bonus Gertrude Berg recipe - Essay from the director and more!

Long before Roots, All in the Family, and Tyler Perry, there was Mrs. Goldberg. Yoo-Hoo, Mrs. Goldberg is a documentary that explores the wonderful cultural significance of a creative, energetic Jewish woman, Gertrude Berg, and how her vision and drive broke cultural boundaries in the 1930s and beyond. Berg created a character, Mrs. Goldberg, a lovable and loving Jewish mother, shaped in the immigrant neighborhoods of New York City, who became a national heroine and one of the first true pop culture icons of the 20th century. Directed by Aviva Kempner, Yoo-Hoo, Mrs. Goldberg traces the story of young Tillie Edelstein, granddaughter of Jewish refugees, who was born in 1898 in East Harlem. Young Tillie was inquisitive and formed her love for theater at her father's hotel in the Catskills. Later, upon returning to Manhattan, Tillie married and continued to write, supported by her loving husband. Eventually she changed her name to Gertrude and used her married last name, Berg, and became an early radio star in a series based on her insular Jewish neighborhood. The radio show eventually became a TV series--and giant national hit--earning Berg the first Best Actress Emmy. But the power of Yoo-Hoo, Mrs. Goldberg lies in Kempner's meticulous, captivating storytelling. There are interviews with fans from Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg to NPR's Susan Stamberg--who relates the possibly apocryphal quote from Franklin D. Roosevelt that it wasn't he who led America out of the Great Depression, "it was Mrs. Goldberg" and the nurturing popularity of the radio series that bore her name. This boxed set is a rich exploration of the America of the 20th century, of the bridging of ethnic worlds, and of the vision and energy of one talented lady who captivated America and helped pave the way for the multicultural America that would lie ahead. The disc includes a great commentary by Kempner, several episodes of the original TV series, and interviews with Edward R. Morrow and others about Berg, who freely admits she "spends more time as Mrs. Goldberg than as myself." Fans of pop culture history and the evolving role of Jews in America will especially love Yoo-Hoo, Mrs. Goldberg --A.T. Hurley --This text refers to an alternate DVD edition.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0x9f350d14) out of 5 stars 15 reviews
30 of 30 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9f7789fc) out of 5 stars A touching tribute to a sitcom pioneer. Nov. 5 2009
By Miles D. Moore - Published on
For more than a quarter-century, during the halcyon days of radio and early television, actress-playwright Gertrude Berg ruled the airwaves as Molly Goldberg, a kindly Jewish mother dispensing homespun wisdom to her family and neighbors in the Bronx. Berg told Edward R. Murrow that she spent more time as Molly Goldberg than she did as Gertrude Berg, and this was the plain truth: she wrote, produced and starred in more than 5,000 episodes of "The Goldbergs," making her one of the true creative dynamos of American entertainment history. At the peak of her fame, Berg was second in the public trust only to Eleanor Roosevelt. Unfortunately, the blacklist damaged her career, and destroyed that of her co-star, Philip Loeb, who subsequently committed suicide. Also, the poor picture quality and erratic distibution of the kinescopes of "The Goldbergs" guaranteed that Molly Goldberg wouldn't remain a household name, as Lucy Ricardo and Ralph Kramden did.

"Yoo-Hoo, Mrs. Goldberg!", Aviva Kempner's fascinating and touching documentary, reclaims the story of Molly Goldberg and her creator for modern audiences. Along with vintage clips from the radio and TV programs, Kempner presents interviews with Ruth Bader Ginsberg, Norman Lear, Susan Stamberg and other luminaries who testify to their love of Molly Goldberg and the importance of having a radio and TV character who reflected the reality of their own lives. "Yoo-Hoo, Mrs. Goldberg!" is an apt tribute to an unjustly forgotten pioneer of situation comedy.
20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9f69b954) out of 5 stars Fascinating Documentary about a (Lost) American Icon June 19 2010
By Gerard D. Launay - Published on
Format: DVD
You don't have to be Jewish to love "The Goldbergs." This film is a simply wonderful documentary about a self-made Jewish woman (whose real name is Gertrude Berg) who - through force of personality and hard work - stormed into the radio business in the 1930's and then persuaded the producers to allow her to make the first TV family "sitcom" before "I Love Lucy" or "The Cosby's. Gertrude Berg invented the genre and was the queen of television for years. The movie includes quite a few clips of some of her actual episodes; Many will be curious to see the TV shows in full. (Now that is possible with a new DVD collection). My best friend who grew up in the 1940's opined that this was his favorite television program. Perhaps Gertrude Berg will get her much deserved re-recognition in the 21st century. I was terribly impressed that Gertrude Berg wrote a new TV episode EVERY NIGHT, then directed her co-actors in the morning, became the leading star, and then completed filming that episode in the afternoon. Then, in the remaining hours of the same day she wrote her next episode and did this thousands of times. Let's face it...that is a brilliant accomplishment that no one - male or woman - has ever matched!

What made the TV show so interesting is that Molly bridged two worlds - between the old immigrant way of life and the New World of American consumerism; All along, she retained those important family values of honest work and community compassion. Why did the TV show go out of fashion? Did the New Americans merge into mainstream culture so completely that old time values became less interesting on television?

The documentary is also important for its frank discussion of blacklisting. The television husband of Molly Goldberg took his own life when he was not allowed to work any longer during the McCarthy witch hunting years.

I would not miss this film! Another documentary by the same director is the critically acclaimed "Life and Times of Hank Greenberg". He was a very important athlete who broke racial barriers in professional baseball for the Jews but is much less known than Jackie Robinson who did the same for African Americans. Last, but not least, for those who like Jewish cooking, don't forget to buy [on Amazon] a copy of "The Molly Goldberg Jewish cookbook", a volume that recreates those delicious Jewish recipes of the 1930s - 1950's.
11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa07c3c90) out of 5 stars For Nostalgia Buffs Aug. 27 2009
By Cary B. Barad - Published on
An interesting niche film primarily for nostalgia buffs with a strong emphasis on the 1950's and the birth of modern television. Because it is comprised essentially of film clips and interviews, it is a little draggy at times. There is a socio-political component as well-- with a through account of the Jewish-American immigration experience, Jewish humor, McCarthyism, feminism, etc. The creator of this film is apparently undergoing some of the financial stresses of production, so if you do decide to view it in a theater, you will be supporting her efforts.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa07c321c) out of 5 stars Thanks for the Memories! April 11 2011
By Sol A. Factor - Published on
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Yoo Hoo Mrs. Goldberg, for those of us 55+ is an opportunity to go back in television history and witness one of the pioneer women of radio and television programs. This documentary covers many aspects of her personal and professional life. It makes you realize what a strong personality and great talent she had! A pure joy!
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa2e76264) out of 5 stars Fascinating Aug. 16 2011
By Debrose - Published on
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
A must see, not only was Gertrude Berg a radio and TV icon, she was a pre-feminist era Wonder Woman. She wrote, produced, directed and starred in her own series This film also gives a special insight into that dread Blacklist era of the 50s. Wonderful commentary by Justice Ginsberg and many others she influenced.

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