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The Red Shoes (1948)

Not Rated | | Drama, Music, Romance | 6 September 1948 (UK)
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A young ballet dancer is torn between the man she loves and her pursuit to become a prima ballerina.

Writers:

Hans Christian Andersen (fairy tale), Emeric Pressburger (original screenplay) | 3 more credits »
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Won 2 Oscars. Another 3 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Marius Goring ... Julian Craster
Jean Short Jean Short ... Terry
Gordon Littmann Gordon Littmann ... Ike
Julia Lang Julia Lang ... A Balletomane
Bill Shine ... Her Mate
Léonide Massine ... Ljubov (as Leonide Massine)
Anton Walbrook ... Boris Lermontov
Austin Trevor ... Professor Palmer
Esmond Knight ... Livy
Eric Berry Eric Berry ... Dimitri
Irene Browne ... Lady Neston
Moira Shearer ... Victoria Page
Ludmilla Tchérina ... Irina Boronskaja (as Ludmilla Tcherina)
Jerry Verno Jerry Verno ... Stage-Door Keeper
Robert Helpmann ... Ivan Boleslawsky
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Storyline

Under the authoritarian rule of charismatic ballet impressario Boris Lermontov, his proteges realize the full promise of their talents, but at a price: utter devotion to their art and complete loyalty to Lermontov himself. Under his near-obsessive guidance, young ballerina Victoria Page is poised for superstardom, but earns Lermontov's scorn when she falls in love with Julian Craster, composer of "The Red Shoes," the ballet Lermontov is staging to showcase her talents. Vicky leaves the company and marries Craster, but still finds herself torn between Lermontov's demands and those of her heart. Written by Paul Penna <tterrace@wco.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Between her art ... and her dreams ... was her heart See more »

Genres:

Drama | Music | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English | French | Russian

Release Date:

6 September 1948 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Las zapatillas rojas See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

£500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£13,336 (United Kingdom), 13 December 2009, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$10,900,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Color:

Color (as Colour by) (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Stewart Granger first suggested that Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger look at Moira Shearer as the leading lady. See more »

Goofs

When Vicky begins to dance with the "newspaper" character, only the words "Le Journal" are typed across his face. Partway through the dance his face is covered with newsprint. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[holding doors closed]
Doorman: They're going mad, sir. It's the students.
[From outside]
Julian Craster: Down with tyrants!
Manager, Covent Garden: All right, let them in.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The end of the film finishes with 'Finis' instead of 'The End'. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Sabrina, the Teenage Witch: What Price Harvey? (1999) See more »

Soundtracks

Bougainvillia
(Dance Music) (uncredited)
Music by Brian Easdale
Performed by Ted Heath's Kenny Baker Swing Group
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
(Top 10 pick) A superior film.
22 April 1999 | by Hermit C-2See all my reviews

I first heard of "The Red Shoes" when I read the liner notes to an album by the jazz/fusion group Weather Report, called "Tale Spinnin'". Therein it said that saxophonist Wayne Shorter had seen the film a few dozen times. Intrigued, I watched it when I noticed it in the TV listings. What a discovery!

With its focus on the tangle of lives of a ballerina, a composer, and a dictatorial impresario who uses them both, the story may have elements of a soap opera, but it's a superior soap opera. What appealed to Shorter, I'm sure, is the film's depiction of the artists' creative process. It may have been done better elsewhere, but I haven't seen it. Besides that, it's beautifully directed, beautifully photographed and sumptuous to look at throughout. The surreal title ballet is performed in a segment that is stunning, and I'm not just using that word as a cliche.

Anton Walbrook stands out as Lermontov, leader of the ballet troupe. There are many real-life artists from the ballet world in the film, including Leonide Massine and Robert Helpmann. Massine is particularly effective.

Don't be put off by the notion that this is some effete art film; it's high quality AND accessible. Anyone who enjoys art (especially ballet), romance or just plain good moviemaking owes it to themselves to see it.


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