Natalie Portman is dancing with Oscar in this film. If Natalie Portman doesn't win a best actress Oscar for her performance, she will have been nothing short of robbed. Her portrayal of a ballerina playing the lead role in the "Swan Lake" ballet, is nothing short of fantastic. Her character gets so wrapped up in her career and the role that the lines between real life and the role get blurred and she completely gets enveloped by the role. Of course, we shouldn't ignore the fact that this movie is great in other ways too.
This movie also stars Barbara Hershey (Erica Sayers), Portman's mother. She is a control freak and former ballerina herself. You end up feeling a love hate relationship with her. Winona Ryder, the ballerina Portman ousts for the lead role in "Black Swan", is powerful in her portrayal of a past-her-prime ballerina. Her character is so gruesome at times, I found myself covering my eyes in some scenes. Ryder is brilliant in her performance. It is good to see her back in movies. Vincent Cassel (Thomas Leroy) does a great job as the artistic director of the ballet company who has the power to make or break any career. His character is sexy and creepy at the same time. Mila Kunis (Lily) is the best friend/biggest threat to Portman's (Nina) character and she is magnetic in this movie. It is easy to see why Nina is drawn to her.
Last but not least, Darren Aronofsky delivers this fabulous story with his usual dark mood. As usual, Darren exhausts you. I found myself very wound up and tired at the same time after watching this movie. He has the wondrous ability to draw the viewer into his movies and you are both haunted and mesmerized at the same time for hours sometimes days. In the case of his movie, "Requiem for a Dream", I still shiver, squirm and feel downright uncomfortable years after I seeing it.
See "Black Swan" before it leaves the theater. This movie needs to be seen on the big screen because it was shot so brilliantly and the performances were so great. You will forget that you are watching a movie and you will feel like you were in the story.