BLACK SWAN - REVIEW 01
Looking back over Aronofsky’s career I can see a recurring theme, destruction of one’s body in the pursuit of something you love: truth (“Pi”), narcotics (“Requiem for a Dream”), adulation (“The Wrestler”) and perfection (“Black Swan”). The parallels to “The Wrestler” are strongest with the director walking a tight rope between respect and gratuity as he shows both the lowest and noblest of these professions. In “Black Swan” this approach descends further into stereotype, but in a series of recent interviews ballerinas who viewed the film conceded these persisted with reason.
In visual style it was again closest to his last film, with a washed concrete texture to his shots. In isolation I love this aesthetic and it worked wonderfully before. It certainly helped to modernise the image of ballet, giving it a cold industrial functionality. I would perhaps have preferred it if some of the regal mystique remained though.
I can’t say what I want to about the plot with giving the game away, except that it’s fun guessing which of two ways things will turn after some wonderful horror motifs. My personal favourite being the sound of beating wings on the Subway. Things do get much scarier and gory than that though, culminating in one fantastic feathered flourish.