Though Natalie Portman won an Academy Award for her role as dancer Nina Sayers, the breakout star of the film, Black Swan, actually turned out to be Mila Kunis who prior to her role as Lily was known for television work. Now 7 years old, Black Swan, directed by Darren Aronofsky, still holds up well. Some folks would consider it a classic, and many folks will say that the film is a tour de force of acting which also includes Vincent Cassel, Barbara Hershey, and Winona Ryder.
A prominent ballet company out of Manhattan is about to open the new season with a performance of Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake. Director and company owner Thomas Leroy (played by Vincent Cassel) wants a new take on the ballet so he’s looking for something a bit different. He wants the characters of the white and black swan to be played by the same dancer. Nina Sayers is about to find out if she is going to be the lead but as the stress, both personal and professional, begin to weigh on her, she begins to wonder if her mother, her friends, or even a supernatural presence is thwarting her.
A film bounced about a few times by your co-hosts, Black Swan makes it as an episode for discussion. With its strange and surreal visuals, a sexually charged performance by Mila Kunis, and Natalie Portman playing a mentally struggling person on the verge of breaking, the film continues to wow even if it seems to have been copied many times since. Listen to find out what Dark Discussions thinks of this modern classic.