*I can’t exactly Review Black Swan without giving too much away; I will make sure I don’t spoil anything to major, but this movie has such an intricate story that it is hard to tell what is a spoiler, and what is not.
The movie is about (if you don’t already know) a young Ballerina named Nina, (Natalie Portman) and her struggling story to become a respected, accomplished Dancer. She lives with her overbearing, ex-Ballerina mother (Barbara Hershey) who calls her cell if she is running a few moments late, and insists on being allowed to enter her room whenever. The movie isn’t really about this story, but it is a good backdrop, and helps many scenes along.
Nina (Portman) is vying for the lead role in the play “Swan Lake” at her dance school, but the lead role will go to someone who can portray both the White Swan and the Black Swan in the play. Nina eventually does get the lead role as the swan, even though the abusive Ballet Director, Thomas Leroy (Vincent Cassel), feels like Nina is better at portraying the White swan.
A new ballerina arrives at the school named Lily (Mila Kunis), and even though Nina sees her as competition, she doesn’t resent her, at first. The Ballerina director at one point in the movie tells Nina that Lily is a better Black Swan than she is, and that drives Nina (among other things) to become better.
In many descriptions you may read for this movie, the reviewer will say it is about Natalie Portman’s character finding Mila Kunis’ character a threat to her Role in Swan Lake. Even though it is one of the main story lines, I found the main story to be about Nina’s transformation into the Black swan.
Think of the White swan as someone who is innocent and nice. Now, think of the Black Swan as someone who is un-pure, loose, and basically the complete opposite of the White Swan. When Nina gets the role of the White/Black swan she is a White Swan, and everyone around her (besides her mom) is telling her she needs to become the Black Swan, and she does anything and everything to do just that.
Black Swan is a very sexual/sensual movie. I had heard some things before going to see it, but I didn’t realize how Sexual it was going to be. Besides Porn, Black Swan is probably one of the more sexual movies of the year, and it barely has nudity. Nina’s Ballet Director and Mila Kunis’ character basically flood Nina’s mind with sex, and this pushes Nina to becoming a bit more of a “Black Swan”
Nina also suffers from hallucinations, and this is where the movie gets a little confusing. I still am not 100% certain as to which sequences in the movie were hallucinations, and which were truthful. I find this to be somewhat of a flaw, and the director (Darren Aronofsky) should have been a bit clearer on this. The more Nina delves deeper into the White Swans opposite, the more Delusions she has. The Hallucinations are the best part, and the most thought provoking. They make they movie even quite scary sometimes, and relatively tense, when I left the theatre my shoulders were even tense.
I am going to say; many people will find this movie creepy, and disturbing. Even though Black Swan is full of amazing dancing, this isn’t a dance movie per se, if you want a dance movie rent Step Up 3D (actually, don’t). I really liked Black swan, but I wonder if I would have liked it more if I hadn’t heard so much about it. I had such high expectations of Black Swan, and I wasn’t entirely blown away by the movie, up until the last 45 minutes. I found the first half of the movie to be somewhat (I mean just a little bit) slow, and unexciting. For me the last 25 minutes made me realize that this movie was one of the best of the year, but isn’t that a little long to wait.
The movie is about Nina; it is about her entirely and never strays from her perspective. We are placed into the life of Nina, and we feel as an audience everything she is feeling while going through this melodramatic stage in her life. Sometimes that can be boring, but not when the beautiful Natalie Portman plays the main character. Portman did such an amazing, wonderful, haunting job in this role, and she definitely steals the show. She deserves to win every award this season, and even though I loved Annette Benning in “The kids Are All Right”, Portman was better. Sorry. Portman’s supporting cast was wickedly awesome as well, whether it be “That 70’s Show” alum Mila Kunis, to Vincent Cassel and even the short cameo from Winona Ryder.
To sum it up in a few words, Black swan starts of slow, but when it picks up it turns into a tense, sexual, horrifying portrayal of one dancer, who will stop at nothing to make it to the top.