Black Swan - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Black Swan Reviews

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½ September 17, 2017
A fascinating film with great performances especially from Natalie Portman who definitely gives it her all and because of it you have a very good haunting film.
September 17, 2017
Puntaje original: 8.0

Una obra maestra, Black Swan consolida a Darren Aronofsky como uno de los mŠximos exponentes de los thrillers psicolůgicos. Visceral, oscura, impactante y una soberbia actuaciůn de Natalie Portman.
September 16, 2017
Brilliant, absorbing, disturbing and always wildly engaging. Cassel, Portman and Kunis are all fantastic.
½ September 9, 2017
I think what is most enthralling about Black Swan is the protagonist's descent from innocence and frailty into corruption and madness. Aronofsky creates a stunning portrait of an artist chasing perfection, at first timid and then daring to cross all boundaries to reach what she wants. The film is a masterclass in acting, cinematography, music, choreography, and writing. Portman's performance is stunning and absolutely some of her best work to date -- her evolution and her fall from innocence is breathtaking. I loved seeing how manipulative Nina became, and how tangible her personality changes were reflected in her dancing. Here is a movie that messes with your head, a psychological thriller that keeps its viewers on its toes while delivering on all fronts. After rewatching it, I have to say that I appreciate Aronofsky's craft even more.
September 5, 2017
In 2004, a comedy troupe made up of five guys called ‚Broken Lizard‚? released what I thought was an absurdly funny spoof of horror movie conventions called ‚Club Dread.‚? A shape suddenly appears behind a character, and a loud music queue goes off making the audience jump, or a series of contrived twists turn the plot into Swiss cheese‚"‚Club Dread‚? simultaneously mocked and embraced these kinds of traditions. Although as we can usually expect this protocol in most run-of-the-mill horror movies, never did I think that visionary director Darren Aronofsky would stoop to that level, and all but disregard the integrity and grit that he has layered into all of his previous films.

But I think I am getting ahead of myself. Aronofsky‚(TM)s new film ‚Black Swan‚? centers on Nina Sayers (Natalie Portman), a ballet dancer who is technically proficient, but lacks the raw emotional element of the craft. She lives with her mother, Erica (Barbara Hershey), who once a dancer herself and now wants Nina to succeed farther than she ever could. Erica had to stop dancing after she got pregnant, and she now is the ultimate stage-mom, controlling every moment of her daughter‚(TM)s life and browbeating her when she questions her guidance.

Nina‚(TM)s other instructor in life is the suave, challenging Thomas Leroy (Vincent Cassel.) He casts Nina in the duel role of the White and Black swans in his new ‚stripped-down‚? production of Tchaikovsky‚(TM)s ‚Swan Lake.‚? Leroy tells her that she is perfect for the White Swan, but that in order to play the Black Swan to perfection, she must let go and feel the passion and the intensity.
Perfection is the key word here. Aronofsky has called his new film ‚a perfect companion piece‚? to his previous film, ‚The Wrestler,‚? which, along with his previous three (‚The Fountain,‚? ‚Requiem for a Dream,‚? ‚Pi‚?) also dealt with obsession and addiction. This time, Aronofsky tackles the obsession with perfection, and Portman is his puppet.

After a rival dancer (Mila Kunis) arrives and seems to be out to get her, Nina slowly begins to deteriorate mentally and physically, as she descends into a downward spiral that only Aronofsky could possibly have envisioned.

Portman has received much acclaim for what many film critics have called the performance of her career. I don‚(TM)t want to spoil what Aronofsky and crew have cooked up for a finale by talking too much about specifics in her performance, but in the final third, audiences can expect to discover a side of Portman that almost unrecognizable, as she seemingly goes to a dark and sinister place in her mind to become the duel role. Trained for almost a year to prepare for this role, and the hard work definitely shows. It is a stunning balancing act of technical and emotional skill, and she is superb.

Portman‚(TM)s performance is complimented by some very good supporting work from the always-terrific Cassel, Barbara Hershey and Mila Kunis. Unfortunately, this is where the film becomes harder to discuss.

SPOILERS FOLLOW:
When talking about the characters and their intentions, the lines between reality and Nina‚(TM)s imagination become so profusely blurred that I am left asking myself, ‚Who cares?‚? I don‚(TM)t want to be asking that question, and I almost feel guilty considering how much I have admired Aronofsky‚(TM)s work in the past‚"‚The Wrestler‚? was one of the best films of the past decade. But this time around, he has ventured into horror movie territory and fumbled the raw passion that Nina herself actually does finally realize with her final transformation, a stunning visual effect and an image that still haunts my mind.

I understand that this movie is pure melodrama, and that the stakes are raised to the nth degree in order to achieve the grandest of finales. We are shown absurd images of Nina‚(TM)s degenerating mental state, as her psychoses lead her to transform into the swan (an elongated neck here, bird legs there, black feathers all over), and it is a fascinating concept.

But the concept is immersed in heavy-handed symbolism and disconcertingly average ‚jump-scares‚? and other horror conventions that have no place here. I have given a lot of thought to the ending, and have decided that it works better than I originally concluded. This movie most certainly deserves a second look, but right now I think that it is Aronofsky‚(TM)s weakest outing yet.
END SPOILERS:

The cinematography by Matthew Libatique (another Aronofsky regular) is also worth mentioning, as it is the most distracting and irritating work he has done. That is a mouthful, considering that he worked on the erratically filmed ‚Requiem for a Dream‚? and ‚Pi.‚? He did not work on ‚The Wrestler,‚? but it seems as though he is trying to replicate that same style of following closely behind the main character wherever she goes. It is way too shaky this time around. I will say that the ballet scenes are wonderfully captured. Handheld cameras were used here to a greater advantage, so the dancers could be chased around as they flutter on and offstage, creating a wonderful flow of movement.

What works best in ‚Black Swan,‚? aside from the performances, is the wonderful use of Tchaikovsky‚(TM)s music, arranged and (I assume) remixed by the brilliant Clint Mansell, an Aronofsky regular whose work never fails to send chills up my spine. His music is like another character in the film, as it lives and breathes just like Nina does. Now if Aronofsky could have only managed to breathe a little more life into the film itself, it could have been a far more interesting film.
½ September 3, 2017
There was little about this movie that I enjoyed or connected with. Grey and stark, I found the atmosphere and settings reminiscent of a low-budget movie. Although the tension increases mildly in the second half, it wasn't enough to save it. AAN GGN 1001
½ September 3, 2017
Dark and terrifyingly thrilling.
September 2, 2017
a visionary classic which is groundbreaking in genre and film. great acting, pace and over all dark tone makes this film a memorable piece.
August 30, 2017
Rarely do you get to experience the psychosis through the character instead of an outside character looking in and knowing or at least has an idea of whats happening. This movie is different in the fact that you see things the way she does and suffer though the madness as it takes over the audience.
½ August 29, 2017
Masterpiece...review coming
½ August 28, 2017
Natalie Portman and Mila Kunis are paired up in this trippy and sometimes horrifying film about how something that one obsesses over can be very unhealthy for them. This film is nearly flawless in my opinion, every scene is beautifully shot, the acting is amazing, and there's almost never a dull moment, the ending is also quite impressive to behold. I took off half a star because of the nightclub scene. I understand why it's in the film, but I feel like it's a focus for far too long and is by far the weakest part of the movie as a whole, and I feel like the filmmakers could have made the same point in a much more effective way and been shorter than if they had focused on two friends getting drinks. However, this is a minor flaw in an otherwise flawless movie, and I would still highly recommend watching this to anyone who enjoys film
½ August 16, 2017
Hypnotic is the only word to describe this Darron Aronofsky film
August 6, 2017
Great movie. An amazing psychological thriller! I recommend it to anyone.
August 2, 2017
Nail-bitting the whole way through, this drama thriller never yielded. Left me saying, "Excellent." And wow, was Portman fantastic or what.
August 2, 2017
Brutaly engaiging performance by Natalie Portman! An amazing and well written story that made the audience be asking itself whats going to happen until the last second.
It's an 9,0 out of 10!
July 29, 2017
Story about a dancer who is so desperate to be successful on stage that she has visions and nightmares. She also realizes that she has to grow sexually to become the swan. Just a joy and wonder to watch this movie. Natalie Portman is awesome. Aronofsky deserved his awards.
½ July 22, 2017
Ham-fisted imagery and excessively male gaze aside, this is beautifully performed.
July 15, 2017
Over the many years I've known this movie, I love it more each time I watch it. The hallucinative, trippy, and disturbed atmosphere this film has throughout its entirety is jaw dropping. The three leads bounce off of each other with flaming chemistry. But, as most of you know, the most intense and captivating performance was that by Natalie Portman as Nina. You sympathize with her character, and feel the same struggle she is as she spirals down into insanity. One of the best viewing experiences of my life. Darren Aronofsky delivered an amazing masterpiece of a film.
July 14, 2017
Very weird movie but I liked it! Crazy...good cast, interesting story. Has a start and an end...amazing characters. WELL MADE!
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