The Red Shoes (1948 film)

1948 film by Emeric Pressburger, Michael Powell

The Red Shoes is a 1948 film about a young ballet dancer who is torn between the man she loves and her pursuit to become a prima ballerina.

Directed and written by Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, based on a fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen.
Between her art ... and her dreams ... was her heart. (taglines)

Julian Craster edit

  • One day when I'm old, I want some lovely young girl to say to me, "Tell me, where in your long life, Mr. Caster, were you most happy?" And I shall say, 'Well, my dear, I never knew the exact place. It was somewhere on the Mediterranean. I was with Victoria Page." "What?" she will say. "Do you mean the famous dancer?" I will nod. "Yes, my dear, I do. Then she was quite young, comparatively unspoiled. We were, I remember, very much in love."

Boris Lermontov edit

  • Don't forget, a great impression of simplicity can only be achieved by great agony of body and spirit.
  • You cannot have it both ways. A dancer who relies upon the doubtful comforts of human love can never be a great dancer. Never.
  • [to Julian] It is worth remembering, that it is much more disheartening to have to steal than to be stolen from, hmmm?
  • [to Vicky] Sorrow will pass, believe me. Life is so unimportant. And from now onwards, you will dance like nobody ever before.
  • Miss Page is unable to dance tonight, nor indeed any other night.

Dialogue edit

Lermontov: "The Ballet of The Red Shoes" is from a fairy tale by Hans Andersen. It is the story of a young girl who is devoured with an ambition to attend a dance in a pair of Red Shoes. She gets the shoes and goes to the dance. For a time, all goes well and she is very happy. At the end of the evening she is tired and wants to go home, but the Red Shoes are not tired. In fact, the Red Shoes are never tired. They dance her out into the street, they dance her over the mountains and valleys, through fields and forests, through night and day. Time rushes by, love rushes by, life rushes by, but the Red Shoes go on.
Julian: What happens in the end?
Lermontov: Oh, in the end, she dies.

Lermontov: Why do you want to dance?
[Vicky thinks for a short while]
Vicky: Why do you want to live?
Lermontov: Well, I don't know exactly why, er, but I must.
Vicky: That's my answer too.

Lermontov: How would you define ballet, Lady Neston?
Lady Neston: Well, one might call it the poetry of motion perhaps, or...
Lermontov: One might. But for me, it is a great deal more. For me, it is a religion. And one doesn't really care to see one's religion practised in an atmosphere... such as this.

Lermontov: When we first met ... you asked me a question to which I gave a stupid answer, you asked me whether I wanted to live and I said "Yes". Actually, Miss Page, I want more, much more. I want to create, to make something big out of something little – to make a great dancer out of you. But first, I must ask you the same question, what do you want from life? To live?
Vicky Page: To dance.

Livy: [just before the curtain raises] You're a magician, Boris. To have produced all this in three weeks, and from nothing.
Lermontov: My dear Livy, not even the best magician in the world can produce a rabbit out of a hat if there is not already a rabbit in the hat.

Ljubov: You can't alter human nature.
Lermontov: No? I think you can do even better then that. You can ignore it!

Taglines edit

  • Between her art ... and her dreams ... was her heart.
  • Dance she did, and dance she must - between her two loves.
  • A Dancing, Singing, Swinging Love Tale

Cast edit

External links edit

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