The Turning Point - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Turning Point Reviews

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Super Reviewer
July 21, 2012
A former ballet dancer's daughter moves to New York to star in a big-time ballet company, and the move resurfaces old grudges.
I suppose that the highlights of this film are the ballet sequences, which are well-choreographed and visually fun to watch. But these sequences do nothing to advance the story or the film's characters; they divert the film's focus. Deedee, played by Shirley MacLaine, is the center of the film's main conflict, and Deedee must reconcile her choice - to settle down and have a family rather than compete against Emma, played by Anne Bancroft, for professional success. Despite scenes in which Deedee looks on enviously as her daughter achieves the success she never did, this conflict just sits in the background, and there aren't many moments in which we see Deedee working to resolve the conflict. The affair subplot is lame and poorly presented, and the final fight between Emma and Deedee resolves like a bad Lifetime movie - illogical, maudlin, and wracked with a bond between women that nobody could understand or believe.
Overall, if you like ballet, skip the poor excuse for a plot between the dance scenes.
March 11, 2012
A nice flick~amazing Mikail...
October 12, 2011
Just a bunch of ninnywhissies frollicking around in tights.
August 7, 2011
This just doesn't look like a solid film.
Super Reviewer
July 18, 2011
Bought but not yet watched
February 19, 2011
Herbert Ross really wasn't much of a director, was he? (Apart from [i]The Seven-Per-Cent Solution[/i], which is all sorts of awesome). This is about as flat-footed as you can get, especially for a film about ballet. What surprises me most is the sequences where Yuri seduces Emilia, because that's pretty good, nice and atmospheric with some arresting visuals. Anne Bancroft almost saves the film though - she really was terrific. Shirley MacLaine is good too, but I don't think much of the rest of the cast (apart from a wonderfully sleazy Anthony Zerbe).
½ January 29, 2011
Together with THE COLOR PURPLE, this movie suffered the same fate of being nominated for 11 awards and won 0. Bland but probably Oscars love the emotional complexity and the beautiful dialogue. Acting is top-notch from the two veteran actresses, Anne Bancroft and Shirley MacLaine.
Super Reviewer
½ January 4, 2011
A boring, talky, and slow movie about dancers. There are some good actors in the movie, but overall it's boring.
½ November 15, 2010
On seeing this movie again after the 33 years since it was released, I found myself taking issue with several of the plot points. Now that I'm near the age of the main characters, with a grown daughter myself, the whole idea of Shirley McLaine still blaming her old friend after 20 years for advising her NOT to have an abortion struck me as ludicrous. We are asked to believe that the Anne Bancroft character selfishly advised Shirley McLaine to bear her child so that Shirley would be forced to give up her dancing career. In the late 50's, when the baby would have been born, abortion was illegal and dangerous. Yet we're supposed to accept that if Anne Bancroft had been a GOOD friend, she would have said, "Sure, honey, I know a guy who's good with a coathanger. You'll be dancing again in a week!" And we're supposed to agree that Shirley is not responsible for the decision she made, it was her conniving friend's responsibility for steering her in a direction she wasn't sure she wanted to take. Really. Moreover, Shirley never tempers her jealous rants by acknowledging that she got a beautiful, talented daughter as a result. Imagine if the character of Emilia walked in while Shirley was basically saying she wished that Emilia had never been born. None of this behaviour seems very mother-like, even for a worse-than-average mom. So it didn't surprise me that the screenplay was written by a man. Shirley also fails in the character department when, given the first opportunity away from her husband, she leaps into bed with an old flame who flirts with her. There is no remorse, no real recognition of how she may have damaged her relationship with her daughter (much less her husband). Instead, she is merely upset that her daughter is angry and doesn't want to speak to her. Her character is unrelentingly selfish and narcissistic.

Putting these issues aside, there are some very likable things about this film. Mikhail Baryshnikov is stunningly attractive and breathtakingly athletic. It is dazzling to watch him. The basic premise of the film is sound, if a little predictable, and if the whole abortion idea had been replaced with something more plausible, it might have achieved the subtlety it needed to be a great movie.
September 19, 2010
Seriously cheesy and at times way over the top, but I'm a sucker for movies about dance.
September 6, 2010
Lots of ballet. Baryshnkov dancing. Ann Bancroft & Shirley MacLa
June 15, 2010
Wasn't paying the closest attention through most of the movie, but was totally enraptured whenever Baryshnikov took the stage...he just takes my breath away--like watching something supernatural happening! Leslie Browne danced well, too, but cannot act! And why is Tom Skerritt always in estrogen-charged dramas?
½ April 27, 2010
Completely overrated and totally forgettable, aside from the scene where Anne Bancroft & Shirley MacLaine have a shouting match in the middle of the street. This won the Best Film award at the 1977 Golden Globes over both Close Encounters Of The Third Kind and Star Wars... How??
½ April 12, 2010
*** (out of four)

A nicely acted and well-made drama that might be a little dull at times, but overall offers some nicely drawn characters.

Years ago Deedee, played by Shirley MacLaine, gave up her dream to become a ballerina in New York City for a life as a mother and teacher in Oklahoma. Her friend, Emma (Anne Bancroft) sticks with and becomes a dancing legend. Years later Deedee's daughter, Emilia, has decided to pursue a ballet dancing career. Emma and Deedee are reunited in New York as Emilia tries to make it.

The dancing segments are beautiully constructed and MacLaine and Bancroft are excellent. The story is good, but lacks momentum.
November 16, 2009
way too much ballet obscure what this movie is really about, women being passive agressive and then shoe beating each other on city streets.
½ October 1, 2009
The character development and interaction is excellent, both Shirley MacLaine and Anne Bancroft are wonderful. If you do not appreciate ballet, it may be tough getting through though. Leslie Browne is such an arrogant snot though, I did not like her character or her performance.
August 15, 2009
Could have been much better.
½ July 31, 2009
Terrific performances by Bancroft and MacClaine can't help the poor pacing of the film and the interesting acting by the two ballet dancers. It is absurd to know that Leslie Browne and Mikhail Baryshnikov both got Oscar nominations for their work...the ballets are beautiful but would have preferred more detail on Bancroft and MacClaine's characters.
June 24, 2009
The best dance movie I've ever seen!
June 2, 2009
um... released in 1977... not 1952.
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