The White Crow

Certificate 12A

(2019) 124 mins

Director: Ralph Fiennes
Writer: David Hare
Cinematography: Mike Eley
Production Design: Anne Seibel
Music: Ilan Eshkeri



A young man of just 22, dressed in a black beret and a dark narrow suit, is on an airplane flying from St Petersburg to Paris. It is 1961 and Rudolf Nureyev (Oleg Ivenko), not yet the imperious figure of legend, is a member of the world-renowned Kirov Ballet Company, travelling for the first time outside the Soviet Union.  Parisian life delights Nureyev and the young dancer is eager to consume all the culture, art and music the dazzling city has to offer. But the KGB officers who watch his every move become increasingly suspicious of his behavior and his friendship with the young Parisienne Clara Saint (Adèle Exarchopoulos).  When they finally confront Nureyev with a shocking demand, he is forced to make a heart-breaking decision, one that may change the course of his life forever and put his family and friends in terrible danger.  From Nureyev’s poverty-stricken childhood in the Soviet city of Ufa, to his blossoming as a student dancer in Leningrad, to his arrival at the epicentre of western culture in Paris in the early 1960s and a nail-biting stand-off at the Le Bourget airport, The White Crow is the true story of an incredible journey by a unique artist who transformed the world of ballet forever.  From the official website

In Russian, English and French with some subtitles

For more information, including a full cast list and reviews, go to:


Ukranian Oleg Ivenko is exceptionally talented, both in the art of dance and acting, so much so we genuinely believe he could be the great Nureyev. Let alone the performer’s breathtaking dancing ability, in his onscreen debut he possesses the arrogance and assertion that encapsulates the personality of the dancer, whilst also displaying his more affectionate and emotional expertise as the picture reaches a pulse-raising climax.”  The Upcoming

“Fiennes combines the thriller elements with poetic flashbacks to Nureyev’s childhood and keeps a tight focus on the dancer.  When he is most at risk, Nureyev makes decisions with his artistic future more in mind than his personal safety.  As Fiennes reminds us again and again in what is his best film yet as a director, the “white crow” will do anything to put himself into the limelight, the one place he is convinced he belongs.  The Independent

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