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17 August 2013

Darren Arenofsky's "Black Swan" (Review) Modern Classic

Directed by Darren Aronofsky
Screenplay by Mark Heyman, 
Andres Heinz, 
John McLaughlin and 
story by Andres Heinz
Cinematography by 
Matthew Libatique
Editing by 
Andrew Weisblum
Music by Clint Mansell (Score) Pyotr 
Ilyich Tchaikovsky (Non-original 
music) Produced by Ari Handel, 
Scott Franklin, 
Mike Medavoy, Arnold Messer 
and Brian Oliver
This is part of our modern film classic series

“Black Swan” is a modern classic.  You may even consider it as a dark fairy tale for women struggling to wake up from a real nightmare called patriarchy.  The film is open to so many interpretations, which is often the mark of a great film directed by a visionary filmmaker.  In fact, every element of the film worked in unison in rendering a multi-dimensional piece: the cinematography, the music, the editing, the writing and the superb ensemble cast.  Obviously, as in any great ballet performance, the prima ballerina occupies the center stage; in this case, it is Natalie Portman.  She is in every scene; and without her bravado performance, the film would not have been as engaging.  However, Darren Arenofsky’s masterful invisible hands really steered this new masterpiece. 

The film is a play of mirrors; perhaps one of the best films to make use of mirrors to expound the story and reveal subliminal messages.  Nina (Natalie Portman) is a splintered character as shown repeatedly in her many mirror reflections.  The mirror also reveals her relation to other characters in the film, most notably Lily (Mila Kunis), Thomas (Vincent Cassel) and her mother Erica (Babara Hershey). Images of bars and cages are also evident throughout the film, which signifies entrapment.

Critics and movie aficionados can view “Black Swan” at any angle. You can employ feminist, Marxist, psychoanalytic, formalist and absurdity critiques.  The film may be a metaphor for an artist, a case for Mother-daughter sexual abuse, subjugation of women, or a critique on fairy tales. However one may dissect the film, it never fails to reveal more than what is in the surface.

"Play of mirrors, bars and cages"
Rationale for the use of non-free media. Click this

The following are reviews about the film
We also encourage other critics and film lovers to share their reviews and be part of the "Black Swan" discourse


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