White Nights Movie Review

White Nights

Two Men.. Two Worlds.. One Dream... FREEDOM
White Nights Picture


Mikhail Baryshnikov, Gregory Hines, Isabella Rossellini, Jerzy Skolimowski

Helen Mirren, John Glover, Geraldine Page, Stefan Gryff, William Hootkins Update Cast

Thanks to Ann
The movie was titled "White Nights" for the natural phenomenon that occurs in parts of Russia where the night is as bright as day. The phenomenon usually takes place between June 11 and July 2 and is referred to as "White Nights".

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A London to Tokyo airplane crash lands at a Siberian air strip and passenger Nikolai 'Kolya' Rochenko's nightmare begins...

Unconscious Nikolai (Mikhail Barishnikov) is found by the KGB to be the famous Russian ballet dancer who defected to the United States eight years earlier. Now that the defector is back on Russian soil, the authorities may refuse to let him leave. But the KGB have a plan. They want to try to get Nikolai to return to Russia of his own free will. They send him to meet with another famous defector. An American United States Army deserter living in Russia.

They bring Nikolai to his old apartment where the American is sent to keep an eye on him and is ordered to convince him to stay in Russia. They also use Nikolai's former lover (Helen Mirren) to try and talk him into staying.

Trapped and powerless, Nikolai forms an unlikely friendship with the American, Raymond Greenwood (Gregory Hines), a tap dancer, who has come to Russia because he was fed up with racism in the United States. Raymond has perhaps changed his mind about being in Russia and has found that racism exists everywhere.

The two men find that their love of dance overcomes political differences. The dancers come up with a daring escape plan. They recruit the help of several characters along the way.

Nikolai is determined to go back to the United States and Raymond is just as determined not to leave his wife (Isabella Rossellini), a Soviet citizen.

Author: AnnUpdate This Review


I saw this movie the first time as a teenager wanting to see the dancing. The dancing and music are wonderful. Oscar winning music from Lionel Ritchie and Phil Collins.

There are some very humorous and emotional exchanges between the two men.

I re-watched it as an adult and was more impressed with the plot and the drama between these two men. Both unhappy with their own countries and fleeing to the country the other had left.

The acting is very strong. The dancing is the plus for me.
Russian accent errors. The moving background in car ride scenes seemed very fake.

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The Movie Data

Key Crew

Director: Taylor Hackford
Writer: James Goldman, Eric Hughes, James Goldman, Nancy Dowd
Producers: Bill Borden, William S. Gilmore, Taylor Hackford
Locations Manager: Peter Elford, Bernard Hanson

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Release Date: 22 Nov 1985
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Studio: Columbia Pictures
Production: Columbia Pictures Corporation, Delphi IV Productions, New Visions Pictures
Genre: Dance / Music

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The Movie Trailer
Jump To: Music & Soundtrack Vibes
1985 Columbia Pictures
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