Friday, December 31, 2010

Black Swan (2010)

Director: Darren Aronofsky. Cast: Natalie Portman, Vincent Cassel, Mila Kunis, Barbara Hershey, Winona Ryder. 108 min. Rated R. Drama.

The fatality of method acting ... in the world of ballet. Aronofsky continues his tale of masochistic characters, as they self-destruct in the path to perfection - this time illustrating the female version of The Wrestler. Portman offers her fair share of method acting , making you guess at times: is she just acting, or has she become a delusional ballet dancer? I'm giving this a Mojo for the one crucial and incredibly-crafted scene, where accompanied by Tchaikovsky's tremendous Swan Lake, she literally transforms into the Black Swan. The image just doesn't let me go.

Mo says:


  1. The scenes with dressing of "Black Swan" were the only moments in which she was totally without unstability, anxiety, and fear and she knew exactly what she wanted to do. Devil is so powerful! Great performance by Portman. I became nervous along with her whenever she was.

  2. Curiously, I never thought Natalie Portman was able to play a villain. Maybe that's what makes the transformation scene especially poignant.

  3. personality disorder+ perfectionist personality + controlling mother + entering a complicated job = Natallie Portman in this film.
    Although the scenario was nothing new the special scenes with her anxiety were impressive.

  4. I recently heard from a colleague that there's a special clinic for physical and mental disorders of ballerinas at Stanford University. The psychological problems they have are probably severe enough to justify a separate treatment system - and an entire Oscar-winning movie role!

  5. I can't believe it has taken so long for me to catch this stunning film. Like you I was captured by the transformation scene.

    This felt like a real portrayal of what it must be like to suffer a serious mental illness.

  6. Toast,

    I'm also surprised you hadn't seen this already! And since we're on the subject of Aronofsky, I hope you haven't missed his "Requiem for a Dream", which is a better and much more distrubing film than this.