Wednesday, 1 September 2010
Venice 2010: Black Swan
"Resembling a Red Shoes on acid, Black Swan takes the idea of giving one’s all for art to a morbid extreme," writes Indiewire's Todd McCarthy. "Applying the gritty handheld technique he successfully employed in the working class environs of The Wrestler to the rarefied domain of classical ballet, Darren Aronofsky swooningly explores the high tension neuroses and sexual psychodrama of a ballerina on the brink of simultaneous triumph and breakdown. With Natalie Portman, in the demanding leading role, equaling her director in unquestioned commitment, the central issue for the viewer is how far one is willing to follow the film down the road to oblivion for art’s sake."
"A wicked, sexy and ultimately devastating study of a young dancer's all-consuming ambition, Black Swan serves as a fascinating complement to Darren Aronofsky's The Wrestler, trading the grungy world of a broken-down fighter for the more upscale but no less brutal sphere of professional ballet," writes Variety. "Centerstage stands Natalie Portman, whose courageous turn lays bare the myriad insecurities genuinely dedicated performers face when testing their limits, revealing shades of the actress never before seen on film. As with The Wrestler, Fox Searchlight faces formidable marketing challenges, likely exploiting the psychosexual thriller's racier elements to eke out a similarly modest score."
"Already back on track after Venice Golden Lion winner The Wrestler, Darren Aronofsky soars to new heights with Black Swan, an enthralling drama set in the competitive world of ballet," writes ScreenDaily's Mike Goodridge. "Alternately disturbing and exhilarating, this dark study of a mentally fragile performer derailed by her obsession with perfection is one of the most exciting films to come out of the Hollywood system this year. Indeed it’s the perfect film to open the autumn season with its gala at Venice tonight, a bold display of cinematic fireworks that will leave audiences breathless."