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Tear Jerker / Man of La Mancha

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  • Quite a few bits in Man of La Mancha, particularly when Alonso Quijana dies. The fact that he dies in a state of euphoria doesn't help matters.
  • The sum total of the last two scenes, from Aldonza's rendition of "The Impossible Dream," when Quixote remembers who he is and stands triumphantly, to Quijana's death, to Cervantes walking toward the Inquisition while everyone else sings the reprise ... sobbing. Like a little girl.
  • The two most beautiful songs in Man of La Mancha (to my mind) are "What Do You Want of Me?" and "The Impossible Dream." Of course they just have to also be the most tearjerking.
    This is my quest, to follow that star!
    No matter how hopeless, no matter how far...
    • God, "The Impossible Dream". As heartwarming as it can be, it's also tear-inducing.
      • Especially when Brian Stokes Mitchell sung it for Ted Kennedy's funeral.
  • Aldonza desperately begging for him to call her Dulcinea again. It doesn't work. At least not at first.
  • "Aldonza". Watching Quixote's illusions ripped from him is horrible, and you feel so badly for poor Aldonza.
    Aldonza: You have shown me the sky but what good is the sky
    To a creature who will never do better than crawl
    Of all the cruel bastards who've badgered and battered me, you are the cruelest of all
    Can't you see what your gentle insanties do to me
    Rob me of anger and give me despair
    Blows and abuse I can take and give back again
    Tenderness I cannot bear.
    • That's nothing to say of her backstory... Her mother gave birth to her in a ditch then just left her there, she has no idea who her father is ("mine was some regiment here for an hour, I can't even tell you which side!"), so she became a prostitute and she knows she's never do any better.
    • And before she launches into the song, the muleteers who had been harassing her had carried her off and gang-raped her. As Aldonza staggers onstage afterward and Quixote swears that the muleteers will pay for their crime, Aldonza bitterly scoffs, "Crime?!? No, do you know the worst crime of all? Being born. For that, you get punished your whole life."


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