Friday, January 28, 2011

Black Swan Movie - The Ultimate Swan Lake

There goes 'The King's Speech's Oscar! What a 'Swan Lake'. Wow. Ten stars out of five! Hats of to the writer for bringing 'Swan Lake' into the 21st century with a brilliant reworking of the tired old fairy story.

The film may get ten stars but the trailer rates only a two! How could the film and the publicity be so different. The trailer gives no idea of just how clever the braiding of the Swan story and reality is in this film. The trailer is full of whooshes and swooshes and quick cutting that gives a completely false impression of the subtlety of the plot. So it was with some misgivings that I went to see it today. From the first moment I knew I was in for something special.

What I can't understand is how one film critic gave it a two star rating!

Hats off too to Natalie Portman. There can be no doubt who is going to get the woman's Oscar this year. What a performance! She was not bad at the ballet bits either and that coming from a ballet dancer like me is praise indeed. Yes the shots were mainly mid shot waist level with close up of someone elses feet doing the difficult bits and clever long shots slightly out of focus or in cracks between mirrors but the story is so compelling one soon overlooks any shortcomings and there were only a few the Film poster shot being the worst. Who picked that? Not a dancer that's for sure.

See what I mean! Ballet is meant to be seen front on with feet. This is side on, feet cropped and makes Portman look as if she cannot dance which in the film is not noticeable.

The film is also one of the most pleasantly erotic films I have ever seen. Ballet dancers are strange creatures. We can be innocents one moment and whores the next and this is the basic plot of Swan Lake, the innocent versus the whore and as a drama it works well. The sex was convincing and erotic. Not sadistic or masochistic for a change. I believe men find it very, very sexy indeed. See re mix trailer below!

Plus of course Tchaikovsky's  magnificent score. Tchaikovsky is tops when it comes to ballet music, in fact nobody does it better.

Then of course there are the classic thriller touches that no film of this genre should be without and some amusing Swan like touches. Add to that beautiful photography, realistic ballet company scenes. The dressing rooms very accurate. In real life however new the theatre is these are usually reminiscent of the local prison, breeze blocks et all. It is as if it is the punishment for enjoying oneself on stage.

I am not going to spoil the plot for you. If you are a balletomane, drop everything and go! For anyone else just go. The cinema was full of youth this afternoon unlike The King's Speech where no one was under 60. If you are not a ballet lover then a bit of homework on Swan Lake would help but not essential. Men you are in for a treat!

My ultimate praise is I am going to buy the DVD!

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