White Nights5/5(1)

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Writer: James Goldman (screenplay), Eric Hughes (screenplay), James Goldman (story)
Run time: 136 min
Awards: Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 2 nominations.

Baryshnikov plays a Soviet ballet dancer who had defected from the Soviet Union. The plane carrying him to Tokyo has to make a forced landing in Siberia, and he is recognized by KGB officer Colonel Chaiko, who then contacts African-American tap dancer, Raymond Greenwood (Hines), who has defected to the Soviet Union, and gets them both to Leningrad. Chaiko wants Rodchenko to dance at the season’s opening night at the Kirov, and Greenwood to babysit Rodchenko. To convince Rodchenko, Chaiko uses Galina Ivanova (Mirren), a former ballerina who never left the Soviet Union and is an old flame of Rodchenko. After an initial period of racial and artistic friction, the two dancers (and defectors in opposite directions) become strong friends. When Raymond finds that his wife Darya Greenwood (Rossellini) is pregnant, he decides he doesn’t want his son to grow up in the Soviet Union, and together with Rodchenko they plan an escape. Notable both for the dancing of Hines and Baryshnikov and for the Academy Award winning song “Say You, Say Me” by Lionel Richie in 1986, as well as “Separate Lives” performed by Phil Collins and Marilyn Martin and written by Stephen Bishop (also nominated).

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