Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Movie Review: "Black Swan"

Few movies can make you question your own sanity, and Darren Aronofsky's Black Swan is such a movie. The movie is a loose adaptation of the ballet Swan Lake. The film follows the story of ballerina Nina Seyers (played by Natalie Portman), her own tale mirroring that of the White Swan in the ballet that she is performing in. But in the film, the Black Swan lurks in the wings in the form of a rival ballerina at the company (played by Mila Kunis), everything that Nina is not, and could she be trying to steal Nina's role from her?

Black Swan paints a picture of an obsessive art form. A strive for perfection and emotional release, and if you can no longer perform, you are washed up and no good. Black Swan fires on all cylinders and technically works. The direction of Aronofsky is engrossing, drawing you into Nina's claustrophobic world of paranoia, the performances from the actors are daring and immaculate, and the cinematography is stunning, in particular the beautifully photographed dream sequence that opens the film and is the highlight of this psychological thriller. Where the movie slips for me, is its racy material, where in the middle of the film it seems to lose itself in this odd perverted journey that is close to soft core porn. While it works to fit into the story, was it necessary to go as far as they do? I think no. These moments seem more a detriment to me, and hindered my enjoyment, seeming as if they were pure grabs to try and make some bank.

This is a film that is so well made, it is a shame to see it dip into such waters that lose it much credibility in my book.

I give Black Swan an F!

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