I made one of my rare trips to the movies to see Black Swan, a film I’ve been excited about ever since the first promotional pictures came out over the summer. She’s getting major Oscar buzz for her role as a childlike, uptight ballerina having a mental breakdown as she tries to encompass both the Black and White Swans of the ballet Swan Lake. After seeing the film, that buzz is fully deserved. If she doesn’t sweep the Best Actress awards over the next few months, she’ll have been robbed. It was one of the best performances I’ve ever seen — period.
It’s a very intense film– a bit of a mind trip. You experience the film through Natalie Portman’s character’s perspective, which means you see the things she sees, which are increasingly hallucinations as the film progresses. It’s brilliantly done, though, and even as cringe-worthy as some scenes were (in the split toenail/bloody cuticles way), it was all shot, acted, and written beautifully. I’m still a bit in awe of how wonderfully it all was put together.
Keep in mind, this is a hard R. It is very sexual (there’s a pretty intense sex scene between Natalie Portman and Mila Kunis, and the ballet director tells NP to ‘touch herself’ — which she does), and violent. Not a film to bring your kids to; the three-year-old that was dragged along to my showing left the theater screaming and crying. But I have a feeling it will be the film to beat at the Oscars.