Professor Vicki Schwab
The Black Swan Evaluation Essay
Perfection is a dream chased by many, but only a few ever achieve it. More often than not, reaching that level of flawlessness requires great sacrifice. “The Black Swan”, directed by Darren Aronfsky, is a captivating psychological thriller set in the world of New York City ballet. The Movie received high ratings and Natalie Portman, who played the lead role of Nina, received praise for performing a majority of the dance scenes herself without much help from a stunt double. The real controversy comes a week after the movie is available on DVD when Portman’s stunt double, Sarah Lane, claims that it was actually she who did the majority of the dancing. According to Lane, Portman’s dramatic transformation into a ballerina – a story firmly at the center of her successful Oscar campaign- was not as impressive as the public was led to believe. “I mean, from a professional dancer’s standpoint, she doesn’t look like a professional ballet dancer at all and she can’t dance in pointe shoe. And she cannot move her body; she’s very stiff,” says Lane. (Katrandjian) She claims that they [the directors and producers] only wanted for Portman to win an Oscar, and that’s their reason for falsely claiming that Portman danced. Otherwise it would not have been that effective of a movie. Others claim that it is not the dancing that won Portman an Oscar, but the way she portrayed an innocent, fragile, and sheltered adult-child who morphs into something perfect and unrecognizable at a fatale expense.
“Black Swan” stars Natalie Portman as Nina Seyers, a featured dancer who is casted as the Swan Queen in the production “Swan Lake”. Nina is a quiet girl with an innocent demeanor, but also has hallucinations which are why her mother keeps her confined. She strives for perfection, but in order to get the part as the swan queen, she must show herself capable of playing the...