Sunday, 19 June 2011

Black Swan

It is easy to be snobby about Darren Aronofsky's recent mainstream offering Black Swan. Particularly in comparison to his earlier works - it doesn't have the edginess of π or the daring desparation of Requiem for a Dream. It's about ballet dancers. Competitive, bulemic girls. Creepy coreographers. Stereotpyes, or at least exaggerations, for which it has rightly received criticsm from the dance community.

The dance communtiy has also praised it. It was possible such a film could alienate the very world it attempts to portray, and there was some scepticism at the casting of an actress to play the role of a ballerina. Keen to allay any fears, the production saw Natalie Portman spend half a year training as a dancer, and she received praise for her performance, both as an actor and as a dancer. The supporting cast were less than impressive when it came to dancing, but Black Swan is a film, not a ballet, and acting is the skill required. Dancing is secondary. If you want fantastic dancing, go and see Swan Lake.