VID: The Red Shoes (1948)

It is a truth universally acknowledged that there is nothing better in this world for a cold than Gene Kelly and hot soup.

My best friend and I have constantly bonded over great dance scenes in movies. They are a majestic facet of film that seems to have faded away from modern cinema into the abyss, making them even more illusive and precious. Over the years we’ve scoured countless films in search of more great dance scenes. Box sets of Ginger and Fred have been worn to bits and enough scratches have accumulated on my Singing in the Rain DVD to warrant it a victim of war crimes.

And just when you thought you found all the greatest dance scenes that old Hollywood had to offer . . . The Red Shoes piques right into your little ignorant lap.

The movie itself takes a fresh perspective on the classic ballet of the same name. A young dancer, Victoria Page, works her way through the ranks of the Ballet company and is offered the main role in The Red Shoes – a ballet where a similarly young dancer is given a pair of demonic shoes (spoiler: they are red) by an evil cobbler and they cast a spell that enables her to stop dancing. Essentially, she dances herself into exhaustion and dies. Bummer. – BUT! The great thing about the movie, apart from the amazing cinematography and choreography, is the parallel stories of the girl in the possessed shoes and Victoria shoes. Both girls pulled in different directions, stretched to there limits, and unsure how to survive. I loved it so much I can’t accurately put it into words how wonderful it was. Watch the Ballet sequence for yourself and be amazed.

 

ALSO, Kate Bush wrote a song inspired by the story of The Red Shoes, gotta love that!

 

 

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