With Oscar season upon us in Hollywood, there is plenty of talk about who will take home the big awards. And after seeing Natalie Portman’s remarkable performance in Black Swan, there’s no doubt she will dance her way on to the Golden Globe and Oscar stages. Darren Aronofsky, director of last year’s The Wrestler, created another work of art with a masterful look into the intense world of ballet in a striking and bloody way.
In this beautiful psychological thriller, Aronofsky captures the human body in a way that is both visually stunning and impossible – not only through dance, but also by mutilating it into a sinful swan skeleton. With colour motifs of pure white, charcoal black and bloody red throughout, The Black Swan literally puts the art of ballet onto a whole new stage.
Natalie Portman plays Nina, a sweet and innocent ballerina who consumes herself into the role of the Swan Queen and evil Black Swan in the classic ballet, Swan Lake. While the gentile nature of the Swan Queen comes naturally to Nina, it is the challenge of becoming the Black Swan that dominates and consumes her. The pressure of the role manifests itself ever more in intense ways from shocking visions to physical wounds.
Whether or not the dark visions Nina is living are physically real is the question that keeps everyone guessing until the very end.
The film showcases the exquisite art of dance but also allows the audience to see the emotional, mental and physical demands that exist with this type of dancing that is often unseen by those outside the dancing world.
This psychological thriller left me with chills and ended on a high note as Portman took the stage as Swan Queen. It’s an enchanting film that deserves the hype surrounding it, and one that you can’t afford to miss.