A dancer myself, I’m always first in line for a new dance movie. “Center Stage” fans be warned, however, as “Black Swan” is nothing like the sappy love stories you’ve seen in the past. This movie will keep you guessing until the end, and seriously questioning your grip on reality; I certainly never stopped gripping my seat. In true Darren Aronofsky form (think “Requiem for a Dream”), the film, at times, goes over the top with disturbing, bloody scenes, but juxtaposed with stunning ballet choreography by New York City Ballet’s Benjamin Millipied, you won’t be able to keep your eyes covered for long.
The story is of sheltered ballerina Nina (Natalie Portman), who struggles to embody both the innocent White Swan and sensual Black Swan characters in a fictional NYC ballet company’s production of Swan Lake. Her fellow dancer and rival, Lily (Mila Kunis) embodies the Black Swan’s persona perfectly, and drives delicate Nina to the edge—of both fear and desire. If you’ve seen the gripping scene in the “Black Swan” trailer of Portman pulling a bloody feather from her shoulder blade or heard of an intense girl-on-girl love scene between Portman and Kunis, that’s only the beginning of where this psychological thriller will go.
Yes, see this movie - just remember that it’s creepy. I went with a fellow writer who had nightmares the next night about waking up with webbed toes ... while some of the gore seemed unnecessary and the white vs. black imagery sometimes seemed a tad redundant, this movie is truly a work of art. Dancers won’t be disappointed with the impeccable technique of American Ballet Theatre’s Sarah Lane (Portman’s dance double) and others will be blown away by the beauty of the music, cinematography, costumes and sets. All of the hype and Oscar buzz is not for nothing, this film is a must see. Personally, I can’t wait to see it again.
"Black Swan" is in select theaters on December 3rd and will be released on either December 10th or December 17th in additional cities. It is scheduled to release on 12/10 in the Detroit area. Click here to see the full list of release dates from Fox Searchlight.