Saw Black Swan last night, after finding out that True Grit has been yanked out of the Ayala cinemas. For shame, we really wanted to see the Coen brothers’ film. But no regrets, the Natalie Portman-starrer is worth its ticket price.
We summarized it thus: Nina should take it easy. Or: Don’t do drugs and dance ballet. But that’s not to belittle this gorgeous film, which I still found gripping and hypnotizing and intense even after seeing it for the second time. Winona Ryder still made me jump, that <expletive>.
In the film, Nina the ballerina grapples with the problem of how to lose control and exude evilness in a dance that requires complete control, and a lightness that should remind one of angels. Finding the solution to this problem breaks her, eventually, because the body and the mind can only suffer enough injuries.
The first time I saw the trailer I knew – just knew – that I would love it: ballet + psychological horror + character fragmentation (+ okay that lesbian kiss intrigued me harhar + Nina’s make-up as the Black Swan is just lovely). Body horror is indeed horrific (“The Metamorphosis”, plus the Philippines’ many legends of transforming sinners, like the “Alamat ng Pinya” – have you ever considered how fucked up the “Alamat ng Pinya” is?), and this film made the ethereal swan look monstrous.
I’ve read a review online saying the film only made the reviewer ask more questions instead of giving her answers and I think: What questions, and why do they have to be answered? The film shows a young girl’s descent (or ascent?) to insanity. It is not a mystery that needs to be solved, it is meant to be experienced.
Why ask questions? There are no answers here.