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The Tango Lesson (1997)

1:52 | Trailer
On a trip to Paris Sally meets Pablo, a tango dancer. He starts teaching her to dance then she returns to London to work on some "projects". She visits Buenos Aires and learns more from ... See full summary »



Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 3 wins. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Morgane Maugran ...
Red Model
Géraldine Maillet ...
Yellow Model
Katerina Mechera ...
Blue Model
David Toole ...
Fashion Designer
George Antoni ...
Photographer (as George Yiasoumi)
Michele Parent ...
Claudine Mavros ...
Monique Couturier ...
Matthew Hawkins ...
Simon Worgan ...
Pablo Verón ...
Carolina Iotti ...
Pablo's partner
Zobeida ...
Pablo's Friend
Orazio Massaro ...
Pablo's Friend


On a trip to Paris Sally meets Pablo, a tango dancer. He starts teaching her to dance then she returns to London to work on some "projects". She visits Buenos Aires and learns more from Pablo's friends. Sally & Pablo meet again but this time their relationship changes, she realises they want different things from each other. On a trip to Buenos Aires they cement their friendship. Written by David Morgans <in2023@wlv.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Music | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for brief language and some violent images | See all certifications »



| |

Release Date:

14 November 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La lección de tango  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$19,746 (USA) (14 November 1997)


$1,300,000 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Sally: It doesn't suit me to follow. It suits me to lead, and you can't deal with that.
See more »


Referenced in Bleeder (1999) See more »


Performed by The Klezmatics
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User Reviews

7 January 2003 | by (Atlanta, GA) – See all my reviews

I have read a lot of commentary on this film. Then I went to the director's website (Sally Potter) and I read her comments.

I was so into this movie. It started out slowly and I wasn't sure if I was going to stick with it. But as it went on, I was totally drawn in. I love the fact that the director chose to film it in black and white which only added to the artistry of it. I loved the fact that she as the director, and making it autobiographical, allowed us (the audience) a peek into her creative process. I also love the fact that she courageously placed herself into the hands of another artist to learn the tango. I was impressed when I read that Sally Potter had a background as a dancer so it came naturally to her to appreciate and learn the tango.

This movie impressed me on many levels because as a creative talent it takes courage to cross over into the world of another artistic discipline (how easily could a dancer cross over into the world of a film director? you see my point). Or maybe that's not a fair comparison. But to me its literally a case of walking a mile in another man's shoes. Perhaps we find it easy to stand on the sidelines and criticize the work of an artist (be it an actor, director, dancer, writer, etc.) but is it hard to come up with creative visions? Not bloody likely.

I viewed this film as a metaphor for life, relationships, artistry, etc. all of which had parallels in the film. If this sounds too deep, it is, believe me! I saw all of this and more in this film.

It also felt as if Sally Potter is going through an autobiographical and artistic midlife crisis in this film which has given me courage to put myself on the line autobiographically and artistically. There was some criticism that she should have cast someone else in the title role, but when you can't see anyone playing yourself, but yourself, how can you answer even this kind of criticism?

Bravo Sally! I appreciated the peek you gave the audience into your creative process.

17 of 21 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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