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January 4, 2011

Black Swan (2010)

Ballet and Natalie Portman, two attractive things that made me want to watch this movie so much. I'm glad I open the year watching this movie. When I was a little girl, I use to read a comic book about little ballerina called Mari-Chan. The comic was funny but also taught a lot about competition. In those comics I also knew about Swan Lake and her twin sister, Black Swan, and that hard 32-turns (fouett├ęs en tournant) of it's role. Not that the book has any comparison with the movie other than ballet, but hey, most little girls wished she could be a ballerina ^^.

Black Swan is a 2010 American film directed by Darren Aronofsky and starring Natalie Portman, Vincent Cassel, and Mila Kunis. Variously described as a psychological thriller or a psychological horror film, its plot revolves around a production of Swan Lake by a prestigious New York City ballet company. The production requires a ballerina to play both the innocent White Swan and the sensual Black Swan. One dancer, Nina (Portman), is a perfect fit for the White Swan, while Lily (Kunis) has a personality that matches the Black Swan. When the two compete for the parts, Nina finds a dark side to herself. (wikipedia)

Psychological thriller are meant to play people's mind with fear, and the movie made an excellent job. The script was written in 10 years, and Natalie Portman studied ballet for a year. I am amazed by Natalie's commitment for this role. That's someone who are fully responsible and serious with his job as an actor. Read more of this movie's interesting facts here.

One thing I see is when Nina do ballet, the camera took her medium close-up shots. I guess it's suppose to catch Nina's expression but I wonder if it's actually hiding Natalie Portman's ballet technique? Hmmm. As much as I loved the movie, but I can say that if there were more budget for this movie I think it could get better view in the background or places. It's interesting way to look over someone in a lot of pressure into a psychological thriller. There are some amazing effects although it looked horror to see.

In this movie, Natalie Portman plays Nina, a talented girl who was trapped in a lot of pressure doing a big break of leading role. She's obsessed with being Swan Queen and she let her fear control her. Which was also what many people are. Talented, but get caught of peer pressure. It is probably what this movie is about. Everybody wants to be taken seriously, wants to be acknowledged, wants to get recognized by their talents. But the real problem is the pressure to go there, those doubts you have for yourself. Once you let it in, sometimes mind can play tricks on you, let you see negative things. I guess I'll always gonna say this : think positively and let go of the fear.

In the ballet world, it seems it took much discipline, commitment and apparently (like all of any career in the world) passion. Passion it what Nina lacks in this movie, an opposite of her opponent, Lily. In my opinion, Nina should take her mind off ballet and seeing friends who don't do ballet. I don't know if you watched Center Stage, but the leading role actually took other ballet class that are more fun to do. Sometimes you just love something so much and work hard for it, but forget all the fun in the first place. Isn't it the main reason why you love doing what you do? Because it's fun?

I don't want to be a spoiler here, but that's what I see in this movie. I'll let you have your own opinion, and get back to me.


Pat said...

Thanks--I am still thinking about this film that I saw several weeks ago. The pain of working hard for anything of value is taken to the extreme with amazing suspense. A few days later I watched Natalie Portman's first movie, Leon, The Professional. Even at age twelve or thirteen, she had that same spark. Another wonderful ballet film....Mao's Last Dancer.

Andina said...

She's something. Very dedicated. Thanks for your info :)