Between my junior and senior years of college, I studied abroad in Great Britain and Scandinavia for a month studying the film movements in those regions. I had a great professor who showed us all sorts of terrific old British and European films, introduced me to filmmakers like Bergman, Tony Richardson and Derek Jarman, and in the spectrum of attendees, who vacillated between shopaholics looking for an excuse to visit Hard Rock Cafes in London and folks sincerely interested in learning about international cinema, I was more or less the group's ultimate film nerd.
Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger were two of the filmmakers we learned the most about, although in the span of one month, we covered so many other simultaneously I didn't get to show them my full attention. Since then – a pathetically long 14 years – I've been otherwise occupied with classics like That Darn Cat and Patch Adams, and have devoted far too little time to catchin up on their collective achievements, even if I've since become a hardcore fan of Powell's Peeping Tom.
All of which is why I was especially excited to revisit one of their greatest films, The Red Shoes, when the good folks at Criterion re-released it on Blu-ray. Already a marvel of color and cinematography, I could scarcely imagine how good their classic might look in high definition. But does it still seem as magical and moving some 62 years after its initial release? That's what I was eager to find out in this week's Shelf Life.