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Isadora (1968)

A biography of the dancer Isadora Duncan, the 1920s dancer who forever changed people's ideas of ballet. Her nude, semi-nude, and pro-Soviet dance projects as well as her attitudes on free ... See full summary »

Director:

Karel Reisz

Writers:

Melvyn Bragg (adaptation), Melvyn Bragg (screenplay) | 4 more credits »
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Vanessa Redgrave ... Isadora Duncan
John Fraser ... Roger
James Fox ... Gordon Craig
Jason Robards ... Singer
Zvonimir Crnko Zvonimir Crnko ... Essenin (as Ivan Tchenko)
Lado Leskovar Lado Leskovar ... Bugatti (as Vladimir Leskovar)
Cynthia Harris ... Mary Desti
Bessie Love ... Mrs. Duncan
Tony Vogel ... Raymond Duncan
Libby Glenn Libby Glenn ... Elizabeth Duncan
Ronnie Gilbert Ronnie Gilbert ... Miss Chase
Wallas Eaton Wallas Eaton ... Archer
Nicholas Pennell Nicholas Pennell ... Bedford
John Quentin John Quentin ... Pim
Christian Duvaleix Christian Duvaleix ... Armand - a feeble pianist in love with Isadora
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Storyline

A biography of the dancer Isadora Duncan, the 1920s dancer who forever changed people's ideas of ballet. Her nude, semi-nude, and pro-Soviet dance projects as well as her attitudes on free love, debt, dress, and lifestyle shocked the public of her time. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Life and Many Loves of the Most Exciting Woman of Our Time


Certificate:

M | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK | France

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 June 1969 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

The Loves of Isadora See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (director's cut) | (original) | (Ontario)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When filming "the Russian dance sequence" in a theater filled with unsuspecting extras, Vanessa Redgrave duplicated a real-life incident in the life of Isadora Duncan by ripping off the top of her dress and dancing bare-breasted. The extras were not told that she would do this, thus providing the desired audience-aghast reaction shots that director Karel Reisz wanted. See more »

Quotes

Isadora Duncan: You are rich aren't you?
Raymond Duncan: I wouldn't say that. I'm comfortably off.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The film was originally released at a length of 168 minutes. Following this, the film was cut to 138 minutes. In 1987, director Karel Reisz prepared a director's cut of the film, for its television showings, running at a length of 153 minutes. This was the only version ever available on video. See more »

Connections

Featured in Merci Docteur Rey (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Bye Bye Blackbird
Music by Ray Henderson and lyrics by Mort Dixon
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Under-appreciated director, and undervalued screenplay,
14 August 2006 | by SwifttravelerSee all my reviews

Over the past weekend, I viewed a VHS of Isadora. Throughout the movie (and I assume this was in the script), the motif of the scarf is repeated in various ways showing that she loved scarves and billowy fabric; even if she didn't in real life, the reinforcement of the scarf (as well as her pursuit of the man driving the Bugatti), gives her death a logic and finality that "real" life cannot. Surely, Isadora's death must have been so fictional as not to be believed, as well as the fate of her children. Film-makers must craft a film in such a way that the viewer believes that every moment is true. Compare this screenplay with what Robert McKee says about writing screenplays in his incomparable book, Story, and you'll agree that the Isadora screenplay is undervalued. Also, Redgrave's performance is surely one of the finest of any era--and should have gotten the Oscar, but thankfully won at Cannes (outside the Hollywood political machine). The length of the film, to me, was no problem; the life of Isadora Duncan, could not have been shown in less. The stage scenes of her dancing were perfectly directed and illustrated how she could fill a theatre while also being rejected.


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