Nina Sayers has been a dancer with The New York City Ballet Company for over four years. She is extremely disciplined, she lives and breathes ballet. She lives at home with her overbearing mother who gave up her career as a ballerina to have Nina. She is known for her impeccable technique but she lacks emotion when she dances. When the artistic director of the ballet decides to replace the current lead of the ballet with Nina for his new version of Swan Lake, Nina finds herself on a slippery slope into insanity while trying to embody the two roles of the White and Black Swan. Nina’s stringent ways are ideal casting for the virginal and pure White Swan, but her strict discipline and good girl persona make it difficult to portray the evil and seductive Black Swan. Her artistic director is constantly pushing her to let go and let her emotions take over by dancing the Black Swan, while also pushing the sexual boundary in his relationship with Nina. There is also a new dancer in the company who is the complete opposite of Nina, Lily might not have the best technique but she dances from her heart and Nina just knows she is after her part. Nina finds herself in a nightmare that threatens her sanity as she tries to be the perfect Black Swan.
Black Swan is a stunningly beautiful and macabre story that mirrors the ballet Swan Lake. You will not be able to tear yourself away from the movie as Nina begins her transformation into the Black Swan. Nina Sayers is played by the beautiful Natalie Portman and this is the role she won an Oscar and Golden Globe for best actress. She must have done a lot of preparation for this film; at no point in the movie would you not believe that she is a ballet dancer. Portman gives a perfect portrayal of the uptight Sayers. She is the White Swan. Lily, played by Mila Kunis, is a completely different persona from Nina. She is not afraid to use her sexuality to get what she wants. She is the Black Swan. Another great acting job is given by Vincent Cassel who plays the ballet company’s artistic director. He is a father figure to all of the girls yet at the same time he is a sexual conquest. He is precise about what he wants whether on or off the stage.
Director Darren Aronofsky is known for his ability of pushing the envelope of filmmaking and Black Swan is no different. He is not afraid to show you every aspect of the characters lives, no matter how ugly. He also uses the colors black and white to signify the girls two personas compared to the Black and White Swan. This movie is seductive, sexual, and thrilling. The suspense as to what may be around the next corner will keep you guessing right up to the very end. This is probably Aronofsky’s best film to date. You will not regret seeing this film at least once. Between the actor’s superb performances and the visionary direction Black Swan is a new classic to be treasured for a long time to come.