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“Black Swan”, reviewed by the Revered Phil Burgers
February 25th, 2011 by maryburgers

cialis serif;”>Black Swan

Director/stars/etc @ www.imdb.com

This movie actually uses the psychology to lead the viewer on a psycho-sexual journey through the mind of a ballerina, but in the end we learn that that ballerina’s mind is actually our own.

Before I go on, please be aware that although this is a movie review that I guess is supposed to make you decide if you want to see the movie, reading this will pretty much spoil the whole thing for you except some parts that I probably forgot happened or didn’t feel like writing about.

Anyway, Black Swan has clearly been inspired by some of the greatest psychological thrillers of all time such as probably only the Japanese anime, Perfect Blue. For those unfamiliar with the classic, Perfect Blue is the story of a young up-and-coming actress named Mima whose life spirals out of control as she is manipulated by her stalker, who actually believes herself to be the true or maybe just another, second Mima. There are actually two Mimas who believe they are one another when, in fact, they are aware that they are not actually each other because they occupy separate physical space, which is probably obvious even to people who are mentally unstable? And the stalker Mima maintained a blog that the real Mima thought was her own blog even though I’m not sure if the real Mima even knew how to start a blog, which I think used to be more complicated back then and maybe would require some basic knowledge of HTML or something? Though I guess she thought she actually did possess such skills or maybe she actually did? Otherwise I’m not sure why she would think it was her blog? It was a really good movie, and, like Black Swan, will surely captivate the mind of anyone who is inspired by movies that are cerebral and long with many thrills along the way.

Much like other movies of such high caliber, Black Swan begins by masterfully drawing the audience in with a series of events, which occur in roughly chronological succession. The main character, Nina (Natalie Portman) is a ballet dancer who wants to be famous and successful to whatever extent is possible for a ballerina in America, and she’s willing to do whatever it takes. Before long we realize that being a ballerina is no walk in the park, and Nina must spend grueling hours prepping her ballet slippers with her controlling, weird mother.

Upon hearing that the theater needs a lead for its newest production, Nina knows that this is her chance to finally prove her talent. However, a French guy doesn’t believe she is ready to take on the complex role, comprised of both the white and the black swans, which are two types of swan on completely opposite sides of the color spectrum. One day Nina bites the French guy when he tries to kiss her and so he decides to give her the role because he believes that biting someone is something a black swan might do.

At some point after getting the part, Nina is confronted by Winona Ryder, who seems to be making a comeback after not having been in any movies seen by me sinceMermaids with Cher or perhaps Alien Resurrection (logically it would have to be the more recent of the two). Honestly, I don’t remember Mermaids at all, but I’ve definitely seen it and I know Winona Ryder was in it even though I can’t really picture her character. Conflict ensues and a bitter Winona Ryder makes a scene and storms off, at which point she is basically not relevant to the plot anymore. Although there is a scene with her later that was messed up and used psychology to make the movie better and more psychological.

Indeed we soon discover that Nina’s mind, much like a mixed up Rubik’s Cube, is chaotic and crazy, and only through the perfect ballet performance can she twist it back so that each side only has squares that are the same color. But much like the algorithm or whatever that solves the Rubik’s Cube, it is difficult to do the part of the Black Swan. Even after trying several times, Nina could not do the Black Swan dance well enough.

Sensing Nina’s distress from the pressures of ballet, another ballerina, Lily (from That 70′s Show), takes Nina out for a night on the town. First they go to a bar and then Lily thinks it would be a good idea if they did some drugs. Nina declines because she is afraid that doing drugs might negatively influence her dancing the next day. After thinking about it, however, Nina realizes that she will actually have more fun if she does the drugs.

After doing the drugs, Nina has a lot of fun, and it becomes clear that her initial apprehensions were unfounded. Then Lily and Nina go home together and they make love. In the throes of pleasure, goose pimples appear on Nina’s skin in waves. They are not actually goose pimples, though, but featherless swan skin. This shows that Nina is becoming more and more like a swan because she has thought so much about swans while preparing for her role. Indeed, her mind is just swimming with swans.

The next day Nina was surprised to discover that Lily did not, in reality, go home with her the previous night, and it had all been a vivid and elaborate hallucination. Later (or whenever) there is some dialogue between some of the characters and the camera captures them at various angles and then Nina is convinced that Lily is after her part. Afraid that she would become the victim of fowl play, Nina begs the French guy to intervene and prevent Lily from stealing her role. He doesn’t do anything and then it is opening night.

Various things that have to do with the plot occur and there are several psychological thrills. Finally, the time for Nina to either sink or swim as the Black Swan has arrived. Nina dances with overwhelming passion and she is actually transformed into an anthropomorphic black swan (but not really).

All the people in the audience, who must be very interested in ballet and would only be happy to see the best ballet, clapped loudly and some even cheered and everyone seemed very impressed by Nina’s good job doing the Black Swan. All the other dancers surround Nina offstage to congratulate her, but then everyone sees that Nina is wounded and they know she might have to go to the hospital. Before or after this, Nina was like, “I was perfect,” obviously very satisfied that she danced so well at the end even though she fell once earlier. That is the end and we do not know if Nina continued to dance as passionately for all the countless times she would surely have to do this same performance in the future.

I give this movie stars for its high quality performances. Natalie Portman and the girl from That 70′s Show have several facial expressions which they use at all the contextually appropriate times. But actually they do not just both use the same expressions at the same time. Sometimes Natalie Portman might make a surprised face while the girl from That 70′s Show makes a serious face or whatever. That is pretty important in acting because maybe some actors or actresses who are less talented do it in a different, wrong way and the audience might think the movie is not real. Acting isn’t just about being good at making different faces, though. All the other things that are good acting are also done in Black Swan by Natalie Portman and the other girl. In a movie it is also important that everyone has the right clothes and makeup and even hairstyle, and maybe these important things are also considered acting. This is why I believe that many Oscars will be bestowed upon Black Swan, and if the Academy Awards Presentation for 2010 is something that has already happened, I am confident that many Oscars were, indeed, bestowed upon it.

I hope reading this review has given you some insight into Black Swan and how movies are made. I give this movie maximum burgers, but I honestly can’t imagine why you’d still go see it or download it or whatever if you actually read all of this.

Signing out,

D. Philip McToo-large-novelty-burger


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