Black Swan

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Damien
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Postby Damien » Tue Dec 28, 2010 1:26 am

Okri wrote: The raging bravado of the climax alone wipes the mat with virtually every best picture contender.

Too little, too late IMO
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Postby Okri » Mon Dec 27, 2010 11:59 pm

Firmly pro, though I'm paranoid I missed something as I dashed out as soon as the "directed by Darren Aronofsky" credit came up. Then again, I'm notoriously indifferent to whether I "get" a film or not.

The raging bravado of the climax alone wipes the mat with virtually every best picture contender.

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Postby rolotomasi99 » Fri Dec 24, 2010 8:55 am

flipp525 wrote:
rolotomasi99 wrote:
flipp525 wrote:
rolotomasi99 wrote:This was a matinee in an old art house theatre.

Which theater would that be?

Uh...E Street. Is there another art house cinema in our neck of the woods?

Yeah, I thought you were probably referring to E Street which is where I saw it as well. I was thrown off by you referring to it as "old".

But it's not the only art-house theater in the District. West End Cinema has re-opened in Dupont Circle. They're currently showing The Agony and the Ecstasy of Phil Spector, Night Catches Us, Leaving, Tiny Furniture and Kings of Pastry.

What the fuck? I live in Dupont and I had no idea. Thanks for telling me.

You are right about E Street, though. It really is not old at all, it just has an old timey feel to it compared to Gallery Place or any of the other multiplexes. I love looking at all the movie posters on the wall as you go down the escalator.
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Postby Reza » Thu Dec 23, 2010 11:38 am

After a long time I finally have another candidate for one of my old threads on this board.......and the latest nominee for 'Most Annoying Oscar Nominated Performance' goes to:

Natalie Portman in Black Swan.

Aronofsky throws in everything and the kitchen sink too. The film is exhilarating......Tchaikovsky's music for one of course. I think I need to watch it again although I feel too much is being made of the film. I came away more interested in Mila Kunis. Hope this film leads to better films in her future.




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Postby flipp525 » Thu Dec 23, 2010 9:45 am

Eric wrote:
Damien wrote:subtlety is not what you look for in an Aronofsky picture

Indeed not. I loved it.

I'm in the "loved it" camp, too. I thought it was a thrilling experience and, like BJ, felt like I have really been through something by the end of it. Also, I feel like the nods to these other films (All About Eve, Carrie, etc.) were all part of an homage pastiche project with which I was perfectly willing to go along.

The film isn't really about ballet, as has been previously stated. It's about diving into the abyss for one's art, knowing full well that you might not be able to return. The unmistakably narcissistic pursuit for jouissance.
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Postby Big Magilla » Thu Dec 23, 2010 8:42 am

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Postby Eric » Thu Dec 23, 2010 7:44 am

Damien wrote:subtlety is not what you look for in an Aronofsky picture

Indeed not. I loved it.

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Postby The Original BJ » Thu Dec 23, 2010 1:11 am

It's understandable why plenty of people don't like this movie. It wallows in some fairly shop-worn archetypes. It contains numerous "gotcha!" moments of fright that wouldn't be out of place in your average schlocky horror movie. And it obviously aspires to high art pretensions even as it proudly flaunts its trashy, campy side.

And yet...it really got me excited. Like few movies this year, it felt like a work of great ambition that not only engaged me throughout, but left me physically affected once the credits rolled. Whatever it was, I felt like I had been through an experience.

I probably shouldn't be too surprised -- I've liked Aronofsky's work in the past (well, not The Fountain.) Visually the movie is hugely impressive, full of inventive effects, glorious camera moves, and a real eye for composition that puts plenty of this year's awards contenders to shame. (My favorite shot: Hershey and Portman seated in front of the mirrors, so both appear doubled within the frame.) Libatique's grainy photography is beautiful and haunting, literally from the opening dream sequence, up until that final, riveting tour-de-force ballet climax.

I'd basically figured out what was happening plot-wise about partway through, and had my suspicion confirmed by the end credits -- a real nice touch, by the way. Question: is the film's basic premise a spoiler? I've since read some reviews that have revealed it right away, but I didn't know it going in, and was glad I had the chance to realize it on my own.

I'm essentially with the consensus here on Portman. I thought she was very strong in a dramatically taxing role -- I think her commitment to selling the material as seriously as she does goes a long way in helping the audience just go with the bizarre turns of the plot. And I, too, thought the "He picked me" moment was very nicely played. But I don't think she necessarily stands out from the other strong leading ladies this year. To sum up, I'd be fine with her winning Best Actress, but I wouldn't at all be upset if the trophy went to one of her impressive competitors either.

I was surprised by the SAG Ensemble nod, as the smallish cast isn't normally the type recognized in this way, but thinking about it, it actually makes sense. Cassell, Hershey, and Kunis were all quite good in their roles, but none of them really has enough to do to justify individual citation. I'm skeptical Kunis can go all the way to an Oscar nod -- is this really anyone's idea of "best" or just "sexiest"? -- but I did think she was well-cast and very effective.

The sound design was amazing. From the thunderous Swan Lake music, to Clint Mansell's haunting compositions, to the just-loud-enough-to-be-unsettling sound effects, the film's audio is as dreamlike and nightmarish as the images.

I don't think the writers will go for this script at all -- though if it places, it certainly shows the film has strong support -- but I wonder...even though it's billed as an original, couldn't you make a fairly decent case that this is, in fact, an adapted screenplay?

It may be batshit insane, but I haven't been able to shake Black Swan, and I can't wait to see it again.




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Postby Bog » Wed Dec 22, 2010 11:04 pm

rolotomasi99 wrote:Uh...E Street. Is there another art house cinema in our neck of the woods?

You guys have a kick ass area over by you...now this is Columbus, OH speak, and to you guys it's probably crazy talk to say this is the same "area" but you also have the Bethesda Row Cinema, which is also a Landmark.

When I make my way over there to see my sister and college roommates (much more frequently in the past than currently), I'd always get a chance to see films that do not even come near my entire state. I love both those theaters!

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Postby danfrank » Wed Dec 22, 2010 11:00 pm

Count me as another "dissenter." My main problem with The Black Swan is that it contains not even one recognizably human character. I can see how some people might like this kind of movie--I agree that Magilla's references are spot-on-- but am totally baffled by the overwhelming praise it's received.

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Postby flipp525 » Wed Dec 22, 2010 7:29 pm

rolotomasi99 wrote:
flipp525 wrote:
rolotomasi99 wrote:This was a matinee in an old art house theatre.

Which theater would that be?

Uh...E Street. Is there another art house cinema in our neck of the woods?

Yeah, I thought you were probably referring to E Street which is where I saw it as well. I was thrown off by you referring to it as "old".

But it's not the only art-house theater in the District. West End Cinema has re-opened in Dupont Circle. They're currently showing The Agony and the Ecstasy of Phil Spector, Night Catches Us, Leaving, Tiny Furniture and Kings of Pastry.
"The mantle of spinsterhood was definitely in her shoulders. She was twenty five and looked it."



-Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell

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Postby rolotomasi99 » Wed Dec 22, 2010 4:47 pm

flipp525 wrote:
rolotomasi99 wrote:This was a matinee in an old art house theatre.

Which theater would that be?

Uh...E Street. Is there another art house cinema in our neck of the woods?

I was just saying I saw it before its big expansion. When I looked around I saw mostly older folks and the usual art house crowd. However, once the lights went down and things started getting freaky, this audience turned into a bunch of screaming, giggling teenagers. I think the Ryder nail file scene was when people were the most vocal, though the leg breaking moment also got a pretty good reaction.
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Postby flipp525 » Wed Dec 22, 2010 4:41 pm

rolotomasi99 wrote:This was a matinee in an old art house theatre.

Which theater would that be?
"The mantle of spinsterhood was definitely in her shoulders. She was twenty five and looked it."



-Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell

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Postby rolotomasi99 » Wed Dec 22, 2010 4:32 pm

Reza wrote:Finally two dissenters in a row. Yes the fan boys seem to be going into overdrive on this film and I was wondering what kind of masterpiece this film was. Nevertheless I am looking forward to it......maybe hoping I'll enjoy it on a camp level.

If you go in thinking you are about to see the best horror film since THE EXORCIST, you should enjoy it. BLACK SWAN does not quite reach the cinematic heights achieved by the aforementioned movie, but it almost meets its what-the-fuck quotient.

The audience I saw it with was treating it like a horror film, screaming at the scary parts and then laughing at themselves for screaming like little kids. This was a matinee in an old art house theatre. This was definitely a crowd who goes to all the end-of-year Oscar films and most likely avoids the multiplexes. These folks had probably not seen a horror film in a long time and were enjoying themselves quite a bit. When things really started getting fucked up, some folks even talked back to the screen: "What the hell, no put down the nail file, holy fuck girl, you crazy!"

It was fucking awesome and probably elevated the whole experience for me. It is definitely a movie you want to see with a large and very vocal audience.




Edited By rolotomasi99 on 1293054195
"When it comes to the subject of torture, I trust a woman who was married to James Cameron for three years."
-- Amy Poehler in praise of Zero Dark Thirty director Kathryn Bigelow

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Postby Reza » Wed Dec 22, 2010 3:56 am

Finally two dissenters in a row. Yes the fan boys seem to be going into overdrive on this film and I was wondering what kind of masterpiece this film was. Nevertheless I am looking forward to it......maybe hoping I'll enjoy it on a camp level.



Edited By Reza on 1293012349


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