Sunday, September 4, 2011

Just watched...

...Darren Aronofsky's "Black Swan."

I have liked all of Darren Aronofsky’s films: “Pi,” the gut-wrenching “Requiem For A Dream,” and the sci-fi/ historical/ love story “The Fountain” (I have not yet seen “The Wrestler”). They all feature people in some sort of extreme psychological situation and “Black Swan” fits into his oeuvre perfectly.

I am sorry that this review is going to be short: I feel I shouldn’t say much for fear of giving too much away. Suffice to say that the trailers and ads presented the film a certain way (I was led to think of “Single White Female”) and now that I have seen the film, I see that was just a diversion from the real issue in the film. In this way, I feel that “Black Swan” has more in common with “Fight Club” than with “Single White Female.” It goes somewhere and brings up some issues that are rather unexpected.

I will however say that Natalie Portman and Mila Kunis trained for six months and it shows. They both look like ballet dancers, at least to my untrained eye. They both have the same kind of grace and confidence with their upper bodies that I see in dancers. The acting is very strong: Portman certainly deserved her Oscar as she manages to sustain a rather keyed-up (and for an actor, energy-draining) pitch through the entire film. And the special effects are subtle, powerful and, despite the fact that they are subtle, quite breath-taking at moments. Aronofsky uses them judiciously.

The film is a very insulated, peculiar experience… claustrophobic, tense, and disorienting. I can’t say much more. If you have not seen it, you deserve to discover it as the filmmaker intended.

Recommend? Definitely.

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