Black Swan

Rated 3.0

The maestro of an elite ballet company (Vincent Cassel) becomes bored of the house diva (Winona Ryder in a brutal cameo) and tosses her aside. Captured fresh in his deerlight is Nina (Natalie Portman). While Nina is a skilled enough dancer, she is psychologically fragile. Maybe he sees something in her that no one else does, as he casts her in the dual role of Swan Queen in the big production of Swan Lake. What he doesn’t see is that Nina isn’t just wound tightly; she’s one seriously repressed figurine of neurosis. The ascendancy of a rival (Mila Kunis) doesn’t help. And as the maestro relentlessly drives her to open up to the duality of the role, well … she does. While deadly earnest and acted at 100 percent, Black Swan still becomes a little too goofy for its own good, as the melodrama drowns out the ambiguity and the narrative becomes so unreliable that moments that should carry more impact are diminished. But with director Darren Aronovsky’s eye and composer Clint Mansell’s ear, it’s at least a compelling sensorial experience. Cinemark 14. Rated R