Dedication & obsession are two distinct features which can be well understood once you take a look at Black Swan. You don’t need to have a deep understanding of ballet to enjoy this film. The story works more or less as a psychological thriller. Darren Aronofsky has taken his time to emphasize not just the perspective of the art but also the psyche of the paranoid spirit who serves as the heart & soul of this movie.
Nina Sayers is an aspiring ballerina who has long being cared by her controlling mother. A prominent New York ballet company was in lookout for a new star who could take up the role of a Swan Queen for their forthcoming show Swan Lake. This has been the dream role Nina had been prying for so long. However the company’s director Thomas was reluctant to give Nina the role as the new re-imaging version of Swan Queen required the duality of a white & black swan’s persona. Nina’s dance skill was perfect to cast her as the white swan but she lacked the freeness & sensuality to foster the seductiveness of the black swan which was necessary for the show. Thomas was keen to cast Lily; another aspirant, as the black swan as she had the expertise to elicit the sexuality required. Even after winning the role, Nina started to suffer from extreme hallucinations & paranoia as she felt Lily as a potential threat to her career. To what extent a fixation can damage human psyche has been adequately explored through Nina.
This year can be promising for Natalie Portman if she wins the award for Best Actress for the approaching 83rd Academy Awards. The credit is well justified; her role as Nina Sayers electrifies the entire movie. Apart from great acting her intense ballet training did paid off. Almost all the female casts did good starting from Mila Kunis as Lily & Winona Ryder even though her screen presence was limited. Black Swan loves to venture into the darkness & in a way it truly succeeds. The blend of art & passion has never been so intense.