Monday, June 18, 2012

The Agony of Da Feet - Painful Dance Films

Don't you just love films with lots of dancing? There's Fred and Ginger, there's Ann Miller, Gene Kelly. But those are happy dancers. How about tortured dancers in film? Here are three films that will just make your bunions and blisters ache.

The Red Shoes
This gorgeous film from 1948 is about a young ballet dancer (Moira Shearer) torn between the man she loves and her pursuit to become a prima ballerina. Once she puts on those red shoes, watch out!!

 They Shoot Horses, Don't They

This 1969 film starring Jane Fonda and Michael Sarrazin illustrates just what people will do for a little money during the great depression. The lives of these dance contestants intertwine in this tortuous film about dance marathons.

The Turning Point
You just have to see this film for the scene of Shirley MacLaine and Anne Bancroft duking it out in front of the fountain at Lincoln Center. Wow, what a fight scene!  But the movie is more about ballet and the different choices a ballerina must make and how those choices affect their lives. And a special bonus - great dance scenes with Baryshnikov.

All of these films are available from Netflix. But you might also find them at your local library. Check them and then soak your sore feet.