After opening a convent in the Himalayas, five nuns encounter conflict and tension - both with the natives and also within their own group - as they attempt to adapt to their remote, exotic surroundings.
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 <email@example.com>
Christopher Challis had just graduated from camera operator to director of photography, having previously worked with Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger and Jack Cardiff. However, on hearing that the three would be working together on a film about ballet, he went to them and told them that he would happily revert back to the role of camera operator just for the chance of working with them again. See more »
Near the end, when Vicky is getting ready to go on stage for "The Red Shoes" once again, she's wearing the red dancing shoes as she hesitates, but that play starts with the white dancing shoes; only during the play does her character find the red shoes and put them on.
However, this is not an accidental goof. This is essential to the plot and the director wants us to overlook this detail so that all the symbolism of Vicky wearing those red shoes while "unable to stop dancing" can be fully explored. See more »
[holding doors closed]
They're going mad, sir. It's the students.
Down with tyrants!
Manager, Covent Garden:
All right, let them in.
See more »
The end of the film finishes with 'Finis' instead of 'The End'. See more »
I have seen this film about 30 times in 30 years and for me this film will always be special. Astonishingly, my wife, who is a Ballet Teacher, doesn't care at all for this film finding it too 'affected'. Perhaps as I am not involved with ballet at a professional level is a reason why I can enjoy this vibrant, colourful fantasy so much, but then our ballet friends adore the film, so who knows why this film affects some so profoundly (Spielberg&Scorsese!!) and not others. Anton Walbrook's authoritative performance is so memorable and Moira Shearer dances beautifully. Perhaps because the film is so highly charged with passion and emotion it will never please everyone, but I feel this is one of the great achievements of British Cinema and a film so rich and inspirational you will never wish to forget it.
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