Come Oscar night when Natalie Portman is accepting her Oscar for Best Actress (and if she loses I'm gonna be furious) She is going to say "Thank God I've now moved past the horrid Star Wars prequels." I personally find it hard to believe that this was the same girl from Star Wars.
Acting/Characters: Flawless. Absolutely flawless. as i stated before Natalie Portman had better win Best Actress and she has come a long way since Star Wars. Mila Kunis (Better known as Meg in Family Guy) also did a really good job and a Best Supporting Actress nomination (but not win) Might be in the cards for her. I was surprised to find out in the end that Winona Ryder was in the film as the out of date dancer. She had a fantastic performance as well. Very frightening. Also, it's good to see Vincent Cassel doing better things than Ocean's 12. The performances were all around flawless particularly Natalie Portman's. I know everyone says this but it's true, Her transition from white Swan to Black Swan was amazing and in many scenes frightening. 10/10
Plot: I know I have seen another ballet movie outside of this but I can't remember which one. But I know for a fact that it A. couldn't have been nearly as messed up as this and B. It didn't portray the raw emotion that this one did. Few films today do. I really liked the plot. some of it seemed to almost have a David Lynch style to it and I liked that. You weren't always sure what was reality and I always like that in a movie like this. There were some scenes that genuinely frightened me. Most of the second half of the film disturbed me. There were some genuinely scary moments. How many of you actually bother to read these things all the way through? If you do say so. I admit I'm not perfect about it but I'm curious. I would totally have no problem calling this film a horror film or at the very least a Psychological thriller. Some scenes were like District 9 meets ballet dancers. But no one can deny that this film was messed up. 10/10
Screenplay: This was also an excellent aspect of the film. I had no problems with it whatsoever. Each line perfectly fit and was also delivered flawlessly. Whoever wrote this screenplay knew what they were doing and I think Oscar nominations might be in order for the screenplay. 10/10
Likableness: I applauded when the credits rolled. I thought that it was absolutely amazing. I would definitely watch it again (though, not right away. I would need some time to fully digest this one). Here are the Oscars I think it will win/be nominated for
Best Actress-Natalie Portman-Win
Best Supporting Actress Mila Kunis-Nomination maybe
Best Costume Design-Win
Best Makeup-Could go either way
Best Musical Score-Might get a nomination and potentially a win but I think that since most of it is just a variation of the music of Swan Lake, It might not even get a nod.
So yeah, there you go. 10/10
Final Score: 40/40 100% (N)
Trivia Time: 1. The shot of Nina's back as feathers begin to break the skin is an homage to the shot of the hairs on Brundle's back in the movie The Fly
2. Meryl Streep was considered to play Erica, Nina's mother.
3. Both Rachel Weisz and Jennifer Connelly were rumored to star in the lead roles when the film was first discussed.
4. Nina's name in the original screenplay was Alexandria.
5. The production considered setting the film in France and filming in Budapest but the idea was dropped for creative and budgetary reasons.
6. The film began as a screenplay called "The Understudy" and took place in the world of New York theater. Darren Aronofsky liked the script, but suggested it be changed to ballet.
7. The script took around ten years to make it to the screen.
8. Natalie Portman lost 20 pounds to look more like a ballerina.
9. The budget on this film was so tight that when star Natalie Portman had a rib dislocated during a lift and she called the producer for help. She was told that the budget was so low they had no medic. She stated that if they needed to cut items from the budget they could take away her trailer, instead of the medic. The next day her trailer was gone.
10. Winona Ryder spent 10 days filming her role.
11. After practicing with a ballet instructor for three months, five hours a day, seven days a week, Mila Kunis learned how to dance en pointe. She had casually practiced ballet as a child. Winona Ryder who plays the former leading ballerina, only went to one ballet lesson as a kid. She never returned as she thought her teacher was really mean.
Natalie Portman drew on her ballet training from ages 4-13 for the role. She resumed ballet training a year before principal filming began. She trained with Mary Hahn Bowers (formerly of the New York City Ballet) and the regimen included fifteen minutes of toe exercises (for her to be on point for dance scenes), substantial muscle toning, and swimming a mile a day.
12. The soundtrack, composed by Clint Mansell is a variation on Tchaikovsky's "Swan Lake" ballet, but played backwards and in a distorted manner.
13. Natalie Portman revealed that director Darren Aronofsky would subtly try to pit her and Mila Kunis against each other during filming as a way to increase the on-screen tension between their characters.
14. Natalie Portman hit her head during the filming of one scene, sustaining a bad concussion that required an MRI.
15. Due to a twisted rib injury, Natalie Portman had to receive physical therapy during filming. According to the director Darren Aronofsky, Portman is actually undergoing a real physical therapy session in one scene with the actual physical therapist.