“I found PI to be staggeringly humorless. I’ll agree about the ideas, such as they were, being presented clearly. I found nothing enjoyable or engaging, though. Of course, these things are in the eye of the beholder.”
Right but let’s take it further. The brain in the tunnel. It struck me as funny, and meant to be. Speaking to the area he’s in physically (the sort of place where you’d almost expect to find a train in a tunnel), while bringing a sort of pun on where he is emotionally (poking his brain). Funny. With examples.
But yes, let me take a step out of myself and say eye of the beholder.
“I did not find it well shot, edited or written.”
Okay, let me explain why I found it well shot, edited, and written.
First of all, I do really think that the black and white cinematography had a unique look, when comparable closer to Begotten than most mainstream and especially early black and white cinema. It’s even more saturated than noir and I think it fit the world the character lived in perfectly. I especially like how it contained all the visual references to the concepts in black and white, because that’s what Aronofsky is saying about the character—that he thinks in black and white (hmmm, like our disagreement, hehe). People keep offering to pull him out of it—his neighbor, his mentor—but he keeps getting pulled into it by others who abuse his brain and use it against him—the investors, the rabbis. The drama then is if he will be able to remove himself from his own head to go towards those that care for him, or if he’ll fall into the trap of what the others offer. He, of course, is not concerned with that specific dichotomy—he only thinks about what he can learn. This is where the black and white is saturated. As the rhythm of the movie increases (and Mansell’s score starts pulsing along with the editing), he goes so far that the only way to choose the one path (caring people) is to kill off the part of himself he was most invested in, because of the villians.
But! We relate to him not because of his sacrifice or being shoved under. We wanted to go down that path with him. It would be what I would consider poor writing or direction to have the audience always saying, “Oh c’mon man, it’s obvious, go with the neighbor and the mentor, the neighbor, THE NEIGHBOR!” Instead, the movie makes you profoundly curious as to where his discoveries will take him.
Meaningless white space. Go figure. Nevertheless, the journey there was fun, the information worked as Macguffin, the thriller is tight and the imagery got us in his head.
" I found it phony, as I never bought the basic premise of the story, that the little lonely math guy was on to anything at all serious or important at all."
Well, and yes, opinions will differ but where do we find the line of taste in this? Because I wanted to see the movie entirely on it’s premise (“Hmm, a thriller about a guy trying to find an equation for the stock market? Cool.”) Then, being thus interested in it, it did not disappoint. So my question is, did you not buy the basic premise of the story before you watched it, or did you buy it going in but it disappointed? The difference is major—if you didn’t buy the premise in the first place, then the movie simply wasn’t for you. It doesn’t make it a bad movie, it makes it a movie for another audience. If it disappointed, well then there’s the difference in opinion.
“Uh huh. You seem to have a lot invested in finding other people’s comments meaningless.”
In this statement you are drawing attention to my mode of rhetoric.
So was I in the statement you’re referring to.
Are either better? I would say no. I apologize for such treatment of your words. However, I do think words like “hip” state a little more about the speaker, than the do about the movie. This is something that I do actually feel, though you may not agree.
“I disagree. I didn’t find it fun, or cerebral. Opinions, man, they differ.” … and “boredom”
Fun and boredom is certainly entirely opinion. I apologize for the use of one in argument against the other. Cerebral I believe can be justified in terms of the thematic elements of the movie itself—“in one’s head.” Within the movie, both literally (opening sequence) and metaphorically (brain) at points.
So, you didn’t like pi . I did. Opinions, man, they differ.
It’s very late so I’m not going to go back through this thread again, but are you interested in seeing Black Swan ?
Mike: I love your post. I really want to respond to it.
I’m very tired and have to get up in six hours.
To be continued! Thank you for the great discussion.
Nicely stated, Polaris.
No, I’m not interested in seeing BLACK SWAN.
“To be continued! Thank you for the great discussion.”
Thanks to you as well. Have a good night.
Dimitris: “…a faux-masculine sensibility…” Lol, do you realize that this a HUGE part of wrestling? IT’s certainly one thing the film did a great job expressing. That phony mentality of grown men wearing bright green spandex compensating for a fear of not being taken seriously. and the lack of understanding personal relationships because of their extensive traveling.
And what’s with your following comment? Style wise, story wise, and directing wise, Following is the same type of film Nolan’s been making for the past 13 years.
Initial Telluride review of Black Swan is very good.
For fans of daring cinema, “Black Swan” is one to wait for.
I hear you. I should have checked your profile page.
“Style wise, story wise, and directing wise, Following is the same type of film Nolan’s been making for the past 13 years.”
Which is why he should have stopped at Following…really dude..
“…a faux-masculine sensibility…” Lol, do you realize that this a HUGE part of wrestling?"
I still think wrestling is macho chauvinism. In spite of the female additions, it’s still a masculine-made silliness. The pride of wearing a mask? For real? Get a grip fucking Aronofsky and or stop making films.
“I didn’t just say flawed, I said profoundly flawed as in the entire direction of the project is wrongheaded because by not providing strong characters to surround the tragic main character The Wrestler, like Taxi Driver and many of these types of films only end up supporting the cynicism or despair of their main characters.”
Here I read from you a general distaste for cynicism or despair as a thematic element, and that is actually pretty okay. I don’t think it makes cynical movies bad or flawed, but certainly one does get tired of everything being so dark all the time. It is true that human life is more complicated than most of these cynical movies state. However, it is also true that some people’s lives really do unforgivenly suck ass, and then they die. I don’t consider Aronofsky to be realism, but expressionism. And I think he pulls it off well.
As for Taxi Driver , maybe I’ll have to discuss that with you some other time but you actually put forth a point about that movie which is one of the reasons I keep rewatching it because I’m trying to figure something out. On the surface, it is, indeed, very, very cynical. Including Scorsese in the cab and the undercurrents of DeNiro’s character with roots in racism and desensitization. But there’s something rather off about the worldview of the movie as being entirely cynical. It feels as if Scorsese is purposefully creating a perfect storm situation, and throughout the film there are many opportunities for Travis Bickle to break away from the direction he’s going and redeem himself—but those opportunities are very, very subtle. I haven’t really been able to say for sure, and it’s one of the reasons why I consider Taxi Driver one of Scorsese’s best films.
So going back to The Wrestler , one of the things I really like about it is the weird, almost tongue-in-cheek humor behind the conversations before the matches, as the two competitors plan out who will do what to whom and who will win. I especially think of the punk mohawk kid, excited to be, essentially, a showman. I think a cheap and easy way Aronofsky could have taken that would be to make this whole statement about the vacuousness and destructiveness of those scenes, but when the wrestlers are figuring things out, the action slows down a bit and he shoots it like artists collaborating over a model. For a little while as the matches are planned out, these completely unintellectual and literally meat-headed characters actually become very creative, and enjoy their job. So your complaint about Rourke’s character being surrounded by only vapid cliches of that darkness, I do not believe is entirely accurate. But I think we can settle it there, because I understand your perspective on it more now, which is why I asked.
“You may think he is being himself but I’d say he is ignoring the world he sees around him and distancing himself from anything personal by filming intellectual stances.”
I think that is true for The Fountain , but I find Aronofsky’s work to be far from distant. In fact, many times in this thread I’ve stated that I consider him to be immersive. Therein, however, lies the problem of opinion. I cannot convince you that something I found immersive is immersive, if you weren’t immersed in it. However, I believe it refers back to that expressionistic point I made above, and his constant exchange of style. With scenes like the audience playing through the wrestler’s head as he hulks in profile, making Rourke seem bigger and more dragged down by his own weight than he is; with the way he underexposed and then stopped up the photography in pi ; with his collaboration with Mansell and crazy scores that man makes; with his peculiar use of running cams in Requiem for a Dream , I find Aronofsky has a particular interest in placing the audience in the action, as opposed to letting them just sit back and observe it.
“I’m saying that since it has always been the case in cinema circles that the A students are ignored or derided we here have an opportunity to make it our business to spend as much time as possible talking about the A students and little to no time talking about how well some explosion worked in The Expendables (which I assume to be an F) or Inception a C- film at best.”
I disagree that it is always the case that A students are ignored or derided, but that may just come from different personal experiences. We do have an opportunity to make it our business here to talk about the A students, I completely agree. However, taking the time to criticize a B student for not being an A student doesn’t take the opportunity, and since it’s negative criticism, it adds negativity to the board, as well as being self-defeating because it bumps the thread back up (Hello again!). I want to reclaim conversation on this board as being in the enjoyment and appreciation of movies, not the criticism of it—if that means talking more about better filmmakers than Aronofsky, that’s great! But it needn’t require rejecting conversations about Aronofsky. I would see it more as a catch up with them instead of drag them back down sort of situation—aspire to transcend, not limit, discussion.
“When there are ten times as many threads about Paul Morrissey as there are about Aronofsky and Nolan, I’ll slow down my complaining (I know, I haven’t started any, I’m getting around to it.”
I’d love to discuss Paul Morrissey’s Flesh, Trash, and Heat with you. Might create that thread in a tic…
“I’m not saying Jost and Leigh work within limits and transcend them, I’m saying they eliminate as many limits as possible. If Arononfsky’s screenwriter is poor and he can’t write himself he needs to find someone who can.”
Well Aronofsky can write himself, so I just imagine Aronofsky was satisfied with the script as it offered him what he wanted to do, and didn’t feel the need to make changes. Yes, that’s not good when the script is flawed. But again, Aronofsky seems much more interested in the character’s relationship to his job than his relationship to his daughter and the stripper, and I wouldn’t be surprised if the original script actually had more there that Aronofsky frankly glossed over. Good approach? Maybe not. But what’s there is still good, IMHO .
“Yes we can stretch our definitions of value to encompass everything but I think that’s a poor way to go about analysis. The mediocre artists always have plenty of defenders. Occasionally I’ll see someone criticize a filmmaker like Aronofsky on specious grounds (which you may think I’ve done:)), but I have no inclination to correct them because there are too many true geniuses who most people have never heard of that i need to write about.”
So why write criticism of “mediocre” artists instead of getting around to writing about “true geniuses”? Keep in mind that I am totally clear that people can, will, and do say whatever they want on this board, and as a strict anti-censorship person I believe anyone can say whatever they damned well please, even if it pisses other people off. However, free speech comes with responsibility. How does that apply here? Well, it means that if you throw a one-off criticism of Aronofsky, someone like me might come along and call you on it, drawing you further into conversation about Aronofsky. And if you really don’t want to continue conversation about Aronofsky and would prefer to talk about Morrissey, but you let yourself get drawn into this conversation (like you have), then you are responsible as well for the continual discussion of Aronofsky at the expense of the time you could be spending on Morrissey. (Lucky for me, I’d like to discuss both, I like both of them). And as I mentioned above, criticism begets negativity, which makes discussion a little harder to engage in.
I am not saying, “Take responsibility for what you have said.” You already have it, so there’s no need to take it. I’m just pointing out that your responses have helped bump the thread and give me material to work off of, which is what I really wanted from you in the first place. This is because I like talking about Aronofsky, and thus, when the opportunity presents itself, I will. Hello again!
“Why not leave the films aimed at high-school philosophers to the high-schoolers and talk up the films about adult experience as much as possible.”
See again I think Aronofsky is smarter than a man just trying to appeal and speak to high schoolers.
“There isn’t a Wrestler, addict, paranoid in all of us unless you mean that these kinds of qualities and countless others exist in all of us at the same time, all of the time. The narrowing of scope is actually an excuse for a reduction in complexity.”
I meant just the opposite, and I think you and I both share an appreciation for more complicated, multidimensional characters in cinema that aren’t just described or driven by single narratives such as addiction, fatigue, and berievement, e.g. You and I are on the same page there. Another reason why I like Aronofsky and rate him higher than a C (if it’s ratings we want to give him, I’m still sticking to metaphor here I haven’t given any filmmakers grades before) is because he’s good at taking clear and concise narratives that stick to that function, but he isn’t stuck into any single one of them. He doesn’t remake the same movie over and over again or just create variants of his original characters or ideas, he finds something different to explore every time, and changes his style and structure each time he does it. I think that’s remarkable in comparison to someone like Nolan who has pretty much discovered he likes cut-to-black endings and that is that, or Fincher who is trying to break out of his style and you can feel the strain as it just isn’t working out.
“Finally, I’m really just saying let’s talk about gems, gems and more gems.”
100% with you here!
I pretty much agree with you on most of your points and I very much agree that i am often guilty of the very things I criticize. This board is kind of a free-for-al and my comments about it would be more appropriate if they were directed, as they frequently are, towards professional reviewers. That being said, when someone such as yourself presents a carefully thought out defense or recommendation of one of these B student directors, I feel compelled to respond in a way I don’t with the F students, if only because I don’t want the A’s and B’s to become confused.
On to the Morrissey thread:)
macho chauvinism is perhaps part of it. But consider the idea of grown men pretending to hurt each other. Sensitivity is a big part of their work. Taking care of each other. The macho chauvinism is the act, but these are guys who spend 90 % of the year around each other. They are like a vaudevillian troupe. IThe only thing real about that business is the money they get, everything else is artificial, staged and calculated.
It’s the same as Hollywood.
it’s still a masculine-made silliness
That’s the point. However, as noted by a few others here, wrestling itself is merely a mask for the reality underneath. But I hope you know The Wrestler is not really about wrestling. It’s about a man coming to grips with middle age, his many personal failings and his own mortality.
I think Aronofsky is doing pretty much the same kind of thing with The Black Swan. It’s all metaphor for bigger themes.
I don’t know if you guys are mostly being snobby but I can’t find a good reason why you don’t have any expectations about Black Swan. To be honest I am absolutely thriled to see it. Maybe i’m too much of an enthusiast.
I don’t particularly think Aronofsky is a genious but he is certainly a talented director who assumes risks and whose movies have profound themes and very interesting aesthetical and stylistic treatments.
I have only seen Pi and Requiem for a dream. I consider Pi to be a brilliant film (the script is genious and the cinematography is pure old-school beauty), but obviously is not a mainstream flick like Requiem, so more implication from the viewer is needed to connect with it. I believe Requiem is a very well narrated cliché full of stimulus and emotions, and at the time of its release it did innovate although we tend to underestimate this as time passes.
This ballet thriller that Black Swan is supposed to be makes me think of a Mulholland Dr. gone physical. Two rival women with unresolved sexual tension set up in a dark atmosphere.
I find this to be a very interesting starting point.
I have loved every one of his movies, especially Pi and The Wrestler. The Black Swan has nothing but potential with Vincent Cassel and Natalie Portman. I can’t wait to see it. And I agree with the previous post, it does remind me of Mulholland Dr. a bit.
Hmmm … I really begin to have doubts about this guy. I’ve been a fan of his ever since Requiem for a Dream and I still admire the originality of some of his ideas and he definitely is a talented story-teller. But, and this is a huge but, I’ve come to realize that he doesn’t give the viewer space. To think for himself, to interprete, to do anything, really. Aronofsky lays it all out for us. This is fatal for a film like Black Swan, which depended on th suspense elements and it’s especially annoying in The Wrestler. Weird, I’ve never experienced such a shift of feelings towards a director’s work.
I enjoyed the movie immensely but J Hoberman is right on! Even though I liked the movie! It is VERY MUCH like the Wrestler! The ending is very similar! However Black Swain toys with you or at least attempts too.. My problem with the movie is that everything you think happens oh, its just Nina’s mind…I wish Darren let her get eaten out by Milia’s character and I wish that Natalie did kill Mila at the end…I would of like the ending if just played out where after she had the showdown in her room she performs the dance amazingly and then when she does her bow, the end comes! Instead it shared a ending to a past Afornsky which creates this theme or aura around Darren’s work. One day someone smarter with more insight will write an essay about Black Swain and The Wrestler are linked. one day. I am glad I am not the only one who felt that way. I enjoyed the movie I just wish it was actually scary…it needed more giallo elements. I love how the old swan character gets hit by a bus in that sense the movie tips its hat to Argento’s Opera. It needed some monstrous horrific thing to happen a la a Polanski movie. Black Swain didnt have the bite it needed to be scary… I thought it chickened out on itself by blaming shit on Natalie’s hallucinations way to often….but none the less I enjoyed the movie I just wanted a scarier movie then a movie that is like Fight Club esque
In terms of cinematography this movie is one of Daren’s highest achievements! The production design was great. I love the club scene as well as the OPENING. the opening has some of the best camera work ive seen!
excuse my poor grammer and or spelling I am in a rush and I Dont wanna proofread this i am firing this as fast as i can!
Hmmm. After having a few more days to digest Black Swan (and I needed it…) I would have tosay that Aronofsky is 1 star shy of being a genius. The film is 1 star shy of being 5 stars.
There is a certain moment when you think – wow that is really good – or wow – he captured that so well and Portman finally broke free of herself…but then there are those other moments when you feel he is being so achingly literal with everything. Talking endlessly about “becoming the black swan” in the first act didn’t help matters.
The plot points alone…how many times have we been there? How much was he going to take from Cronenberg? What exactly was he trying to do with the muddled performance of Cassel? Oh…he is a lecherous perv who fiddles with the talent….ok so? He was neither here nor there. Why is Wynona Ryder still such a stilted actress even though I love her and will always cherish Heathers? Don’t even get me started on Mila Kunis.
What he did do well, and what he does well is create intense atmospheres of deep anguish and torture. The film could have been retitled Nina, Her Mommy and the Bad Place, because that is where the most disturbing scenes and the most interestingly contrasted character development were laid.
Overall it was good – Portman is amazing, but I am looking forward to when he tries less, and has better dialogue. Just, you know pick one cliche instead of like 5.
Anyone else find the film intentionally quite funny?
^Yeah, kind of .
The dynamic of having a really weak person play the lead might not be the best choice for an artistic director. You’d think the better choice would be a strong person who can play weak.
I wonder what Cronenberg would have or could have done with this. In other words, someone who doesn’t hammer us over the head with a folding chair to show Nina’s madness.
The audience I was in started to laugh when she dragged the body to the bathroom.
I remember there being funny parts, and a couple very poorly acted parts snuck in there, but by and large, I dug the performances and the directing. If anything, the humor was in the absurd exaggeration of the ballet personalities, whose melodrama provided the texture of all the interactions in the film.
I think one of Aaronofsky’s biggest accomplishments here is that he continually defied my expectations. He included the necessary psychological, sexual, and body-horror themes to make it fit together, but he didn’t jump into anything extreme that could destroy the delicate psychological balance between these characters. No nasty flesh-peeling scenes, no mother-daughter abuse flashbacks or incest shocks. He allowed the fear to remain atmospheric and diffuse, instead of trying to pound us into submission. In this sense, it’s a refreshing alternative to the other fashionable, edgy auteurs working today (Von Trier? Gasper Noe? I’m looking at you guys). Aaronofsky seems to have taken the same direction with Black Swan as Haneke did with The White Ribbon: he restrained himself a bit in order to create something tense and unsettling and graceful.
Strangely enough, I never expected the “it’s all in her mind” reveals. By the end of the film, I should have seen them coming, but they were just consistent enough with the tone of the film that I was ready to accept the twists of fortune, just as Nina accepted them until something snapped her out of her hallucinations.
Funny, I had the opposite reaction to the film that you did. I was impressed with how subtle it was. I mean, I know it wasn’t subtle… it was blatantly a movie about scary hallucinogenic psychological breakdown, about seeing ghosts and dissociating from oneself. But it did that stuff through horror tropes, without ever submitting to the excesses of the horror genre. Kind of the opposite of Requiem, which didn’t rely heavily on a gothic/horror atmosphere, but gave us that insane, crippling shock-heavy montage at the end.
You’re right that Black Swan is less subtle than some of Cronenberg’s recent stuff, but his recent stuff is also very gritty and urban-naturalist. Aaronofsky came close to that in The Wrestler, but in Black Swan, he’s swinging out into a more abstract, stylized space, and I think his melodrama is rather justified by this film’s genre and precedents (ballet films, fairy tales, gothic romance, psychological horror).
I wonder what Cronenberg would have or could have done with this. In other words, someone who doesn’t hammer us over the head with a folding chair to show Nina’s madness.
I wondered the very same while watching it. The other thought I had was, this should have been made around 1977, and opened on Times Square. I would have dug it more. As it was, I found it ludicrous in the extreme. I knew where it was going from frame one. Props to Matthew Labatique’s 16mm cinematography.
“The audience I was in started to laugh when she dragged the body to the bathroom.”
Mine to. That part was very funny.
^Jesse M – how dare you have the opposite reaction!!!!!
I wanted a little more of the Tenant in the film. I wanted something that I didn’t expect. I agree that he could have handled the film in a hammier way, but ending was way too reminiscent of the Wrestler. I know people are going to say that the Red Shoes or Altman’s The Company do a better job on ballet, but your point is right about the focus.
I guess the difference, from a tonal perspective is that Cronenberg tends to look at transformation whereas Aronofsky is more concerned with endurance, in regard to the physical condition.
It’s puzzling to me why this guy wants to do a Wolverine film at this point in his career. For myself, there are few subjects of less interest, so…
One would hope that Aronofsky is not intending to make a Wolverine film, so make has make an Aronofsky film about Wolverine. This fits if you look at how influenced he appears to be by Cronenberg and body horror in general. Much could be mined about an indestructable man (who can still feel physical pain) with a steel skeleton and blades that shoot out of his knuckles, when viewed through a body horror lens.
“It’s puzzling to me why this guy wants to do a Wolverine film at this point in his career. For myself, there are few subjects of less interest, so…”
He probably wants money.
“He probably wants money.”
That’s the most half arsed explanation for why he is choosing to make The Wolverine. Quite frankly it’s a little bit disrespectful given how much work he has put into every one of his films. Hang your head.
I saw Black Swan last night.
On a visceral, sensory level, Black Swan is impressive. As a story it worked, and at times I though it crackled. It had the simplicity of Swan Lake itself. All in all, it was a worthwhile experience for me. And yet…something was missing. I don’t see myself wanting to see this movie again any time soon. It’s not that it didn’t meet my expectations (all I knew going is was that it was about ballet and that it had a crazy lesbian scene, that turned out to be far less crazy than the hype led me to believe). If anything, Black Swan defied my expectations, because I really couldn’t care less about ballet as the subject of a movie. (For as great as The Red Shoes is supposed to be, I can’t get into it for the tutus and slippers).
Maybe he wants to make the movie because he likes Wolverine. Wolverine might not be interesting to you (he’s certainly not interesting to me), but we are not Darren Aranofsky.
I’ve been apart of this community for a long while and I’ve never read the forums because I assumed it would be like most forums: a lot of hyperbole and not a lot of thought. I wanted to read other people’s insight of the film but, instead, found people posting months before the movie had wide release discussing why Aronofsky is worthy as a director and there never being a glimpse of conclusion.
I don’t thoroughly enjoy all of Aronofsky’s movies but I do consistently find his work interesting and captivating, so I’ve been excited for this movie since I missed it at the Toronto International Film Festival.
Spoiler Alert Starts Here
I found that the movie made me somewhat angry while I was watching because not knowing what’s real and what’s not doesn’t enhance the film’s themes or statements, but I guess i make peace with it by supposing that she set herself up in that imaginary world to become the other half – the dark swan. It’s sort of what great actor’s do. For some reason, Robert DeNiro’s preparation for Raging Bull came into mind (most likely because he’s the my dramatic example of someone embodying the character one is trying to portray.)
I suppose it’s because I’ve never seen Natalie Portman in such dark roles, but it’s not something I would have thought her capable of so, bravo to that.
I’m not an actor, so I can only imagine that that’s what was happening during the movie. It’s an interesting twist at the end, but it made me frustrated in the same way that “Perfect Blue” frustrated me but, it doesn’t continue to make me angry the way “A Beautiful Mind” continues to make me angry.
I’m excited about seeing him take on “The Wolverine.” If you don’t find the character interesting, you should check out the recent Wolverine: Old Man Logan miniseries. I actually hope that THAT’S the movie he’s making.
@redletterprints – “The film could have been retitled Nina, Her Mommy and the Bad Place,”
hahhaah spot on. i gave it 4 out of 5 stars too. i wasn’t completely satisfied. i wanted her to really kick ass. yeah she had the performance of a lifetime but her life was so loveless and without any empowering retribution or revenge (sort of like a ‘carrie’ bloodbath).
but maybe i’m missing the point that this is supposed to be about method acting or something instead of gender role/identity. regardless, i still wonder why self immolation was the only logical conclusion – when the film itself was completely hysterical.
too bad nina and lilly didn’t get together. they could have had beautiful swan babies that would peck out thomas’ eyes and lay eggs in his brain. then they would move to san fran and open up an intimates shop. nina would knit scarves and lilly would sell imported garter belts.
the film was very fetishistic. she stole from beth various items that were like ballet talismans.
the mom was so very creepy. and their apartment was like a stylized swamp. the color scheme of black, olive and ivy. seriously just go to home depot and buy a lock for your door – the wooden barricade was just sad and scary.
‘black swan’ did remind me a lot of the ‘wrestler’ with a couple of hysterical hallucinations. but at least randy/mikey rourke got to have sex with who he wanted too (the whore with a heart of gold cliche). its interesting to think about the association in how their bounded and restricted body parts – hands and feet – were their greatest asset. but nina/portman couldn’t trust her failing mind which trumps a failing body in my book.
the e scene was great. i liked how the reds/pinks from the club were echoed deliberately in the blanket underneath nina/portman. it was a nice pattern of pink with circles that broke up the space and brought the fantastic element reminiscent of bokeh. the pinks were then seen again when she takes the stage.
one possible issue i have is with a possible continuity error with beth’s lipstick. so nina goes to see thomas and she puts on the lipstick in like the hallway or at home and when she is in the hallway her lips are very pale but when she is in the office with him her lips are so bright red. should i believe that this was intentional?