First Position Synopsis
Filmmaker Bess Kargman follows six young dancers as they enter an international ballet competition.
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Movie Reviews

Critic Ratings

72
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88

St. Louis Post-Dispatch

By Joe Williams
Among recent documentaries, First Position soars to the head of the class.
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80

Movieline

By Stephanie Zacharek
Documentaries don't have to be technically great to be irresistible, and Bess Kargman's First Position, which follows six young ballet...
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75

Boston Globe

By Ty Burr
Because its subjects are so driven and so talented, First Position, which is about ballet, is more gripping than the norm.
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75

Philadelphia Inquirer

By
First Position shows the dancers' emotions, but it is weaker in building the suspense of the competition.
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75

San Francisco Chronicle

Perhaps the most fascinating aspect of First Position is the relationship between aspirant and teacher.
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75

New York Post

By
The movie still seems fresh in the way it respects both the art in ballet and the discipline it demands - even in childhood.
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75

Washington Post

Forget that "reality" show about young dancers on the Lifetime channel. First Position, a debut documentary from Bess Kargman, is the real...
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70

The Hollywood Reporter

By Frank Scheck
First Position overcomes its predictable elements thanks to the inherent visual drama of watching children strain their bodies to the limit...
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60

New York Daily News

By Joe Neumaier
Their devotion to their art is admirable, and the film gets under the skin, if never really in our blood.
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60

NPR

By
It's a simple and lovely movie, and particularly for people who haven't seen "Spellbound," it's a great introduction to the intriguing mix...
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An AMAZING documentary that shows what it really takes....

By ineeddancetolive
You do not have to like ballet to LOVE this film. It shows devotion, beauty, heart, character, tenacity--all the ups and downs that every aspiring dancer faces (no different than what the best sports...

Beware - it's an infomercial crafted by YAGP!

By Russkaya
While this film is interesting in that it affords a rare inside view into the world of ballet competitions, it is quite misleading in several respects. Most importantly, there is no forewarning that...

A BRILLIANT DOCUMENTARY OF BALLET DANCERS IN THE EMBRYONIC STAGES OF THEIR DEVELOPMENT!

By Peneflix
An outstanding film, pivotal in addressing the magnetism of the classical world of ballet, is "The Red Shoes" made in 1948 and starring Moira Shearer and Anton Walbrook; why pursue an art form that...

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More Info

Rated NR
What Parents Need to Know
Common Sense Media says OK for kids 9+ Inspiring documentary about hardworking young dancers.
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POSITIVE MESSAGES
POSITIVE ROLE MODELS
VIOLENCE & SCARINESS
CONSUMERISM