Author Topic: "The Black Swan"  (Read 579 times)

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Offline Cell

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"The Black Swan"
« on: May 11, 2011, 05:17:11 pm »
Meant to type this up forever ago, but I've had time to think about it.
First off, this movie's rated R for violence, language that wouldn't be acceptable in polite formal setting, and some semi-tastefully executed but unquestionably and undeniably adult sexual situations. I'm not going to go into enormous detail, but I believe it's rather hard to discuss this movie at all without mentioning some vitally important plot details. These won't spoil the entire film experience for you, but they will make you examine it more if you actually choose to watch it, and you might see some parts coming if you've got that whole thing going on. I'll make this main summary text smaller (and lighter) so that you can avoid it if you so choose. Copy/paste if you want to see my more in-depth summary and opinion (though it's still quite short.)

Natalie Portman plays Nina Sayers, who's a younger ballerina working professionally for a dance company while living at home with her extraordinarily overbearing and protective mother. The company is set to perform, very soon, Swan Lake, and Nina must compete against other ballerinas -- specifically, Mila Kunis as Lily -- for the part of the Swan Queen, and consequently also the seductress Black Swan since the twin birds must be portrayed by the same dancer.
Nina is assured of the part relatively quickly, though the director finds Portman's character a bit too mild and innocent for the part. He encourages her to find a darker part of herself (specifically, he tells her to go home and masturbate).
Quickly, Nina begins slipping onto a psychological merry-go-round that sends her out on various ventures and behaviors that she's never tried before. Nina becomes obsessed with her roles and craves absolute perfection. More an more, that merry-go-round begins to speed up, and the situations become more beautifully bizarre than seems feasible in a film -- it works perfectly.

Relationships become tense. Portman's character is already almost completely insane in more than a few scenes long before the end of the film.
The beautiful part of this film is that the viewer sees what Portman's character does, albeit from a third-person perspective. This means that at points during the movie, the viewer becomes absolutely shocked at something that happens... Only to be further that the circumstances are not as they appear. Only once I began to get used to seeing the psychotic episodes did I begin to pick out the reality from the insanity in Nina Sayer's world. The movie's a wonderful experience in that you get to see Nina's obsession deepen, and Portman portrays the emotions and personality of the character beautifully. There is a section early on in which she comes home and tells her mother that she's been picked for the part of the Swan Queen. "He picked me, mommy." is the first line in any film I have ever watched that has provoked tears. I found that I could understand this movie, I could relate to it, and that it was absolutely worth watching more than once.

TL; DR./Spoiler Avoidance: Natalie Portman plays an aspiring dancer and quickly becomes obsessed with her role in Swan Lake. The psychological effects of this are profound, and her character becomes immersed in a bizarre, morbid insanity that tosses her about like a rag doll and sets the stage for every single event in the film.
This movie provoked emotion in me more than once, from fear to sympathy to sadness, and it deserves top honors.
I give the coveted ten stars, I plan to purchase a copy when it is available to me, and I intend to enjoy it many times in the future.

Offline Hale Laocon

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Re: "The Black Swan"
« Reply #1 on: May 11, 2011, 05:28:20 pm »
Saw and loved this movie, highly recommended for anyone interested in seeing a well-made thriller. It's got a creepy and melodramatic atmosphere at times but works well in building up the tension, plus the acting's great.

Also Meg Griffin has never looked hotter Mila Kunis looked soooo pretty omg
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