Real art requires victims. Scenic space has two sides. External, which we used to, — it is charming action, making to feel with cry and laugh, inspiring on the sincerest heartfelt gusts. A reverse side, however, it is paradoxically, contains much more: creative searches, human relations, boundless seas of tears and bloody sudor, which way the masterpiece is washed out to the spectator.
Ballet as one of the kinds of art is a more difficult substance because it combines a character in the strongest emotional appearance and merciless physical stress. It is not accidentally that critics remember one of the latest films of Darren Aronofsky «The Wrestler» mostly in connection with «Black swan». Art, as sports, requires a complete devotion, an artist has to sacrifice family, persuasions, and sometimes even own life.
Professional artist, as a sportsman, is doomed from that moment, when he stepped on the way of service to his dream. And although this thesis does not require proof, Aronofsky illustrates physical condition of the main heroine in the row of episodes from the beginning of the film. It is done to help us to understand her emotional tension.
The main heroine Nina Sayers is a ballerina of American ballet. She lives with her mother, who wishes to control her every step. A leading role in ballet «Swan lake» is given to her. But she needs to dance the White swan and the Black swan. However, the producer of ballet Thomas Leroy, considers Nina too closed and innocent for playing the Black swan. And he begins to guide her on the way of debauch. And it is too strong shock for innocent girl Nina and she begins to go crazy slowly…
This movie is not about thorns on the way to success, this is not a story of the birth of the star. Aronofsky went much farther than hackneyed fairy tale, where young starlet, in spite of barriers and intrigues of malignant persons, walks up to the top of glory. Intrigues in the ballet troupe are just one of the costs of artist’s life. And by the version of producer, it is the most banal and superficial. Much more frightful and painful fight takes place in the soul of the artist: with that character, which is had to transform, with reality, which does not fit the internal world and finally with himself in the creating of artistic image.
For Nina (Natalie Portman), this fight obtains nature of opposition to the whole world. And it is too closed: ballet class, dark coach of subway; mother, who is crazy about the daughter’s career and does not give her a choice and space, troupe with its intrigues and gossips, her friend-rival, who is ready to take her place at any moment and yesterday’s prima, who does not want to part with the glory, choreographer, who, in his desire to set free a dancer, balances on the verge of vulgar intrigue. All these images embody fears of the main heroine, it is like links of the chain, leading her to the dead end from which, nevertheless, she finds courage to get out. But before, her second ego would open to the world and it is authentic, perfect creation which does not have mercy on human weakness and it would not have mercy on a creator.
«Black Swan» is a story of self-damage of the blinded mind, or maybe, it is a story of Mozart and Salieri told in a new way. And although the main heroine took much more from Salieri, for example, rational belief that it is possible to fill up the lack of innate gift of impersonation by exhausting trainings and discipline, the Mozart’s origin wins. It is inspiration, verging with insight or with insanity, sacrificial devotion, and absolute confluence with an ephemeral artistic image. But it had to stay behind the scenes as usual.
One secret of ballet steps is fouettés en tournant. It consists in that at a rotation an artist must choose a visual point and go back to it by his eyes after every turn again and again. This way only can make him able to avoid dizziness and retain equilibrium. As well as in dance, in life the main heroine chooses the one-unique point of aspirations.
She did not make mistake, simply the way of man of art is almost always short and tragic very often. «Black Swan» of Darren Aronofsky convinces us in rightness of the old proverb again: an art requires victims.
A composer Clint Mansell wrote soundtrack to this film, which consists of variations of the musical themes of Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky. Soundtrack is just magnificent. Music of Tchaikovsky is fantastic. Music of Mensell is tensing, disturbed and dramatic; it absorbs listener and makes to feel pain together with the main heroine.
«Black Swan» is one of the best psychological thrillers in the history of the cinematography. It is instructive, frightful and wonderful. Bravo, Darren Aronofsky!
Black Swan trailer