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Ballet Shoes - family and children's DVD / international DVD review
BALLET SHOES Rated PG by the Motion Picture Association of America curledupdvd.com rating: 3 1/2 stars
Actors: Emma Watson, Yasmin Paige, Lucy Boynton, Emilia Fox, Eileen Atkins, Richard Griffiths
Director: Sandra Goldbacher   Distributor: Koch Vision
DVD release: 02 September 2008   Runtime: 84 min. (1 disc)
Format: Color, Dolby, DVD-Video, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
DVD features: Audio tracks (English), Subtitles (English), Exclusive interview with Emma Watson, Deleted scenes, Ballet Shoes audiobook excerpt

My eight-year-old daughter and I put in the DVD of Ballet Shoes in hopes of some fun "mommy-daughter" time. Where I found the movie pleasant and engaging, my daughter found it incredibly boring. Unfortunately, we have not read the book of the same name by Noel Streatfeild, so I don't think she was prepared for the storyline. Ballet Shoes is Emma Watson's first major movie other than the Harry Potter series, and she performs admirably.

The story centers on three sisters in the 1920s. Pauline (Emma Watson) is an aspiring actress, Petrova (Yasmin Paige) wants a career in aviation, and Posy (Lucy Boynton) is an aspiring ballet dancer. The girls are orphaned and live with older sister Sylvia (Emilia Fox) and her nana (Victoria Wood) while their great-uncle Matthew (Richard Griffiths) is away. Sylvia doesn't have much money, so she is forced to take in boarders in order to support the girls. She enrolls them at the Academy of Dance and Stage Training to see if the girls can bring in some sort of an income with their talents. The girls make incredible progress at the Academy but along the way must face many obstacles to achieving their dreams.

Ballet Shoes offers a pleasant storyline, and girls who strive for achievement in the arts will find it inspirational. Special features include a 20-minute interview with Emma Watson which her fans will love, as it gives glimpses into her life and tidbits about the Harry Potter movies. Deleted scenes are interesting but don't add a great deal. The audio excerpt from Ballet Shoes provides a reading from the novel.

Bottom line: a decent use of time, Ballet Shoes is endearing with wonderful acting and characters. Girls who aspire to ballet or the theater will especially delight in Ballet Shoes, and the movie is wholesome enough for the whole family, if you can get the boys to watch it!
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reviewed by Melissa Parcel
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