Young ballerina Victoria Page is poised to be a major star in the ballet world, training under the tutelage of the relentless teacher and impresario Boris Lermontov whose demands upon his students include total dedication to their art, to the exclusion of absolutely everything else in their lives. When Victoria falls in love with Julian Craster, the composer of the new ballet 'The Red Shoes' which Lermontov is staging as a showcase for her, he is appalled and Victoria leaves the company. Victoria and Julian marry, but she is still torn between her love for him and the lure of dancing the ballet The Red Shoes, the one that would show her talent to its full.
A truly remarkable British film and the pinnacle of achievement from the fertile partnership of Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger. Everything from the design, photography and choreography here is superb, topped with excellent performances from Moira Shearer (Victoria), Marius Goring (Julian), the tremendous Anton Walbrook as the obsessional Lermontov and choreographer and dancer Robert Helpmann as Ivan Boleslawsky, Victoria's partner once 'The Red Shoes' is staged. Based, loosely, on the fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen, this is imaginative, thrilling cinema which has been an acknowledged influence on such directors as Martin Scorsese - his favourite film - and Stephen Spielberg. A genuine classic of the cinema.