December 19, 2010
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Leave it Darren Aronofsky to direct yet another tale about obsession. And like the ones he’s done before, they really get under your skin.
In Black Swan, Natalie Portman plays Nina. Nina is a perfectionist who longs for the big break in her career. Despite being rather cold in her execution of her performances, she is picked and must learn to dirty up the innocence that she represents so that she can also faithfully represent The Black Swan in Swan Lake. As the rehearsals progress and Nina is nearer and nearer to opening night, he fragile composure erodes.
Natalie Portman gives hands down the best performance of her career. You can tell that the year she took off to study and learn ballet pays off. She is backed by a sublime supporting cast. Barbara Hershey channels Ellen Burstyn’s Requiem for a Dream performance perfectly as Nina’s overbearing mother who lives vicariously through her daughter. Mila Kunis steals the scene as Nina’s potential threat. And the ever brilliant Vincent Cassel, in one of the best roles of his career.
But all the praise can’t rest on the cast and director, everything about the movie astounds. The costumes and cinematography are nothing short of stunning. The script is rich with dialogue and depth that is void of cliché. Definitely one of the best films of the year. 4.5 out of 5 stars