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4,728 Ratings

The Red Shoes

United Kingdom, 1948
Drama, Romance, Music


Victoria Page is poised to become a prima ballerina, but earns ballet impressario Boris 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.

Our take

Dazzling, rapturous, unforgettable—this is what such adjectives should be saved for. A sack of Technicolor wonders awaiting your discovery, Powell & Pressburger’s musical masterpiece is an essential landmark (its biggest fan: Martin Scorsese!) and a timeless elegy to life as an artist.

The Red Shoes Directed by Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger

Awards & Festivals

Academy Awards

1949 | 2 wins including: Best Art Direction-Set Decoration, Color

1949 | 3 nominations including: Best Picture

The Goethean rupture, Ballet Russe treatment. To rush “into the jaws of Hell,” that’s the artist’s duty, Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger wouldn’t have it any other way… An incomparable hallucination of fatale beauté absorbed by De Palma and Scorsese and Jarman and many others, just the altar for the divine nymph in the aquamarine chiffon gown finally seen with red all over.
July 25, 2016
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These characters have become cinematic tropes partly on account of Moira Shearer’s penetratingly realistic performance as Vicky Page and Anton Walbrook’s equally authoritative turn as Boris Lermontov. Beyond that, The Red Shoes singularly achieves a primary objective of any moving picture: the integration of physical and emotional expression.
August 05, 2015
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[Lermontov] is, as far as the love between Julian and Victoria is concerned, the villain. But, if he’s villain then he’s victim too. For, his great love, mistress and companion, is the ballet. And Victoria and Julian’s romance threatens the success of the ballet, or, at least, in Lermontov’s besotted mind it does. Their love stands in the way of his love.
August 06, 2010
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