Fixer, The: Frankenheimer’s Oscar-Nominated Version of Malmud Tale of Persecution, Starring Alan Bates in Oscar-Nominated Performance

Alan Bates gave a strong performance as the title role in John Frankenheimer’s version of The Fixer, John Malmud’s grim tale of religious persecution in Czarist Russia

Dalton Trumbo’s adaptation leaves much to be desired, and hence a large cast of gifted actors, such as Dirk Bogarde, Hugh Griffith, Ian Holm, Jack Gilford, and Elizabeth Hartman, was underutilized.

The movie divided critics (and was eventually a failure), but Bates, in spite of his British accent, was praised for his nuanced portrait of Yakov Bok, the Jewish handyman who is unjustly imprisoned and tortured for a ritual murder he didn’t commit.

Oscar Nominations: 1

Actor: Alan Bates

Oscar Awards: None

Oscar Context

In 1968, the winner of the Best Actor Oscar was Cliff Robertson for “Charly,” in a race dominated by Brits, such as Ron Moody in “Oliver!” and Peter O’Toole in “The Lion in Winter”; the fifth nominee was American Alan Arkin for “The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter.”

Credits:

MGM
(John Frankenheimer-Edward Lewis Production)