6.8/10
2,223
24 user 18 critic

Dance with a Stranger (1985)

A stormy relationship, complicated by the strictures of 1950s social class and gender roles, ends in death. Based on the life of Ruth Ellis, the last woman hanged in Britain.

Director:

Mike Newell

Writer:

Shelagh Delaney
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3 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Miranda Richardson ... Ruth Ellis
Rupert Everett ... David Blakeley
Ian Holm ... Desmond Cussen
Matthew Carroll Matthew Carroll ... Andy
Tom Chadbon ... Anthony Findlater
Jane Bertish Jane Bertish ... Carole Findlater
David Troughton ... Cliff Davis
Paul Mooney Paul Mooney ... Clive Gunnell
Stratford Johns ... Morrie Conley
Joanne Whalley ... Christine
Susan Kyd Susan Kyd ... Barbara
Lesley Manville ... Maryanne
Sallie Anne Field Sallie Anne Field ... Claudette (as Sallie-Anne Field)
David Beale David Beale ... Man in Little Club
Tracy-Louise Ward Tracy-Louise Ward ... Girl with David Blakely
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Storyline

Ruth Ellis lives with her ten-year old son Andy next to a night club. One night she meets David Blakely, and they start a love affair. However, for David with his upper-class background, it is impossible to uphold the relationship. He breaks up with her, something which makes Ellis, obsessed by him, very upset. Written by Mattias Thuresson

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

It wasn't simply love. It was a case of cold-blooded passion.

Genres:

Biography | Crime | Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

9 August 1985 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Bailar con un extraño See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$2,174,622

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$2,260,519
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Miranda Richardson won the Best Actress award at the Evening Standard British Film Awards for her performance in this movie. See more »

Goofs

Ruth switches on a radio which begins to play immediately. In those times, vacuum-tube radios had to warm up for about 20 seconds. See more »

Quotes

Anthony Findlater: She
[his wife]
Anthony Findlater: eats like a bird...
Ruth Ellis: Really? My son tells me birds eat twice their own weight every day.
See more »

Connections

Featured in At the Movies: Buried Treasures - 1987 Edition (1987) See more »

Soundtracks

Theatre Spotlight
(uncredited)
Music by Ena Baga
De Wolfe Music Ltd
See more »

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User Reviews

Mike Newell's DANCE WITH A STRANGER is a drama based on the obsessive and ultimately destructive love affair between a wealthy young British man and a 30 something madame.
22 August 2005 | by Michele_PhillipsSee all my reviews

Although best known for his blockbuster hits FOUR WEDDINGS AND A FUNERAL and LOVE ACTUALLY, Mike Newell does a splendid job of bringing this tragic tale to the screen. The cinematography is lush and the recreation of London in the 1950's, both sets and costumes, is brilliantly realized. Obsession can be a difficult subject to tackle and yet one is compelled by the script, the visuals, and most of all the consummate acting, to see this affair through to it's conclusion. Miranda Richardson is the woman trapped by her need to make a good living and her inability to disentangle herself from the clutches of a destructive affair. An incredibly young Ruppert Everett and the redoubtable Ian Holm make up the other two sides of this twisted triangle. While all three actors shine, Richardson's portrayal is one of an individual tortured by a relationship that can never be and at a loss to explain why it endures to herself or anyone else. Not for the faint of heart but well worth the effort. Based on a true story.


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