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The Turning Point [VHS]


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Product Details

  • Actors: Anne Bancroft, Shirley MacLaine, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Tom Skerritt, Leslie Browne
  • Directors: Herbert Ross
  • Writers: Arthur Laurents
  • Producers: Herbert Ross, Arthur Laurents, Nora Kaye, Roger M. Rothstein
  • Format: Color, HiFi Sound, NTSC
  • Language: English, French
  • Rated: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Number of tapes: 1
  • Studio: Fox Home Entertainme
  • VHS Release Date: February 3, 1998
  • Run Time: 119 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (84 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 6300247163
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #219,917 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

Mikhail Baryshnikov made his film debut in this lightweight but entertaining drama about the relationship between a renowned ballerina (Anne Bancroft) and the woman (Shirley MacLaine) who had trained with her but had given up dance to become a wife, mother, and teacher. Between MacLaine's envy over her friend's career and the attention her own ballerina daughter (Leslie Browne) is getting, MacLaine's character goes through a complicated crisis. The two actresses carry the story very well and probably camouflage its thinness; they even make a somewhat condescending climax involving a catfight seem like a good idea. A subplot involving a developing romance between the virginal Browne and Baryshnikov's womanizer makes for pretty window dressing. More memorable are dance sequences featuring each in splendid performance. Baryshnikov's leaps are something to behold. --Tom Keogh

Customer Reviews

Well, what can I say.
L. Steidl
I have the VHS which I have about worn out and now see that it is available on DVD, which I will have to go buy.
botschgirl
Great acting, Great dancing and still a must have movie.
Robert B.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

69 of 71 people found the following review helpful By L. Steidl on March 1, 2005
Format: DVD
Fabulous that they have finally found a DVD home for this, one of my favorite movies ever. Back in 1977, I was a kid of 17 and quite "different" from my peers. Being bored by Star Wars (all that noise and awful John Williams music giving me a headache!), and much more enchanted by three other movies released that same year: New York, New York, Julia, and The Turning Point. As you can see, I had quite a lot in common with other boys my age! I can remember as if it were yesterday the first time I experienced The Turning Point on the big screen. Granted, I was not, nor am I to this day, a particularly huge admirer of ballet - opera being more my style - but after seeing this flick, the combination of fine dancing, and, especially, fine film acting and script writing, just blew my mind and the lid off my head! The late 70's was a kind of renaissance for great woman actors (and ballet too!), and scripts written for them, especially MacLaine, Fonda, and Streep. This film was a stand out indeed. The scenes of MacLaine in her suburban home, preparing to receive the company of her long-lost ballet friends are just so palpable and full of emotion. Bancroft is no less compelling - gorgeous to look at (is it just me or does she not look a bit like the great Callas?), subtle in her resignation that she is no longer what she was but NOT bitter about it, the way MacLaine is quite bitter and a bit disappointed in terms of the way her life has turned out. Her caring and admiration for MacLaine's daughter, Leslie Brown, is never, I feel, done in a way to spite her one-time rival. It's simply one artist acknowledging and encouraging another for the sake of their Art.Read more ›
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48 of 50 people found the following review helpful By R. Penola on June 30, 2000
Format: VHS Tape
Combining soapy suds and exhilarating dance sequences with the formidable acting skills of lead players Shirley MacLaine and Anne Bancroft, Herbert Ross creates a winner in The Turning Point. Baryshnikov is every bit as magnetic onscreen, in a well-chosen role as a dance lothario, as he is every second he is dancing; he defies gravity and sends your spirit soaring. Leslie Browne, a novice (to put it kindly), in the acting department, is no less spectacular on the dance floor. Rarely has a big, old-fashioned, commercial film been so successful at making classical ballet so tangible and electric. The score, punctuacted throughout with the obvious classical scores of the many pieces we get glimpses of, adds a resonance to the story. MacLaine and Bancroft, as rivals in romance and once, in their careers, have a grand old time with our emotions, as they traverse the entire wide range of jealousy, humiliation, aging, love, friendship -- and eventually combust onscreen, which provides the movie with its most dazzlingly entertaining moments of drama. Tom Skerrit is terrific as Shirley's dancer-gone-husband, and the portrait of MacLaine's character has surprising moments of reality sprinkled throughout the screenplay. A wonderful big, overlong, old-fashioned movie, and a great way to introduce your family to classic dance, not only painlessly, but engagingly.
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26 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Movie Mania VINE VOICE on July 17, 2006
Format: DVD
The Turning Point was by far the best picture of 1977. It brought together two great actresses whose careers were in limbo and revitalized them.

Deedee (Shirley Maclaine) and Emma (Anne Bancroft) were best friends. Both were up and coming stars of the American Ballet Company. Both were vying for the same role, the new ballet of Anna Karenina (Turning Point #1). But Deedee gets pregnant and has to decide if she will keep the baby (Turning Point #2). Deedee decides to have the baby and Emma gets the ballet.

It's 20 years later and the ABC is performing in Oklahoma City, where Deedee and Wayne (Tom Skerritt) have settled down and opened their own ballet school. Two of their children are dancers but the middle child wants nothing to do with it. Deedee and Wayne hold a party after the performance. Their oldest, Amelia (Leslie Browne), is drawn to the fading prima ballerina who invites her to take class with the company the next morning.

During the practice, Emma points out Amelia to the head of the company (Martha Scott) and she sees the talent plus the publicity value. Amelia is offered a place in the company. Emma is honored by the offer but is a little afraid at being taken away from family (Turning Point #3). To help her along, Deedee offers to spend the summer with her in NYC. Deedee, Amelia and her brother all head off to the Big Apple.

Amelia easily fits into the company and the managers take notice of her. She quickly gets a \the lead in a major new ballet. She also catches the eye of the hot new star, Yuri (Mikhail Baryshnikov). They start a relationship but the difference is she wants more and he wants to play the field.

Deedee quickly finds out that the only thing worse than a fading star is a never was.
Read more ›
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 8, 2000
Format: VHS Tape
This movie contains wonderful acting by the entire cast, beautiful dancing (and well photographed too: none of this current quick cutting nonsense borrowed from MTV that is so distracting and obnoxious to watch). One of the few films that deals honestly with coming to terms with the choices we make throughout our lives, and with ageing, as well as the dramatics and the eccentricities of talented people in the highly competitive world of theatre. The athleticism of great dancers, and great dancing, is also given its due here. Considering the enormous amount of talent in this movie, as well as all the Oscar nominations it received, WHY ISN'T "THE TURNING POINT" ON DVD IN WIDESCREEN?! Surely there are enough Shirley MacLaine and Anne Bancroft fans out there to warrant a good DVD transfer. These are two of the greatest ladies in the movies. They, and this fine film, deserve better than a cut-price edition. Let's hear it from the fans: BRING OUT THE WIDESCREEN DVD!
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Closed Captions
I agree! I've been desperately waiting for this movie to come out CC or with subtitles and here it is without either. VERY disappointing. I'm not buying this movie until it comes with captioning.
Dec 10, 2007 by Nic |  See all 2 posts
WHY is this movie so expensive now?!
it's been discontinued by the manufacturer... the price will go down if they put out a new version or start making it with a two movie version (like combining it with another movie of one of the stars).... I'm hoping it will be available as such!!
Feb 17, 2010 by titania in pa |  See all 3 posts
Call for comments about The Turning Point
I just watched this film again the other night. I was impressed with how silly and dated the mentality was that drove the plot. Casual marital infidelity, free and easy, exploitive love (I seem to remember a lot of cigarettes, too) - all promoted as fashionable and acceptable. But the vacant... Read More
Apr 2, 2008 by customer |  See all 3 posts
absolutely love the movie, are you kidding me abou the price ? Be the first to reply
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