15 May 2011

Black Swan

Saw "Black Swan" today. The Oscar for Natalie Portman now makes a lot of sense. I really liked the film with its Hitchcockian atmosphere, awesome on-stage cinematography and use of Tchaikovsky (not sure any film has ever used classical music better). A little less of the off-stage handheld would have made it even better.

Having now seen both "King's Speech" and "Black Swan" I don't understand the directing Oscar at all though. I think it's arguable that "King's Speech" is the more enjoyable film, and thus maybe it deserved Best Picture; but as an achievement in directing it's miles behind "Black Swan." "King's Speech" is a extremely well-done person-overcomes-handicap-in-time-of-need story that's been done many times (not faulting it for that, just pointing it out); the only direct antecedent I can point to for "Black Swan" is Satoshi Kon's "Perfect Blue", and "Black Swan" is quite a bit beyond that work.