Darren Aronofsky’s latest film, Black Swan came out on limited release last night. And of course, annoyingly, it’s not playing anywhere in Indiana. The movie is a psychological thriller, starring Natalie Portman, who plays a ballerina named Nina (hey–that’s MY name), in Swan Lake. A tweet by Clint Mansell, film composer, and Natalie Portman, both interpret Black Swan as a feminist film.

I cannot say myself if I think it is that kind of film at all and what kind of feminism Mansell and Portman are talking about. But, if you’re as excited to see Black Swan, as I am, it’s something to look out for.

From an interview with Aronfsky on Cinema Blend (who directed Requiem for a Dream, The Fountain and a few other):

Talking about the parallels to the ballet, the prince in this version of the story is Vincent Cassel’s character, but he’s not really a worthy prince at all. He calls the women girls, he dominates them, and you’ve set him up as this figure of dominating masculinity in a movie that’s otherwise all about women. Is that a comment on the role of gender dynamics in the ballet world?
Natalie connects it to any kind of male-dominated system. Sure, you can read into that, and think about it that way. She feels the film is a real feminist movie.

And there’s been rumors of people thinking it’s a misogynist movie–
It’s not.

Oh I know. That kind of interpretation drives me crazy.
It’s a very easy way to go with it. And there are certain cliches, but as Hubert Selby Jr. used to say to me, “It’s called a cliche because it’s often true.” But it’s not just that. The Vincent character was a really hard obstruction for Mark [Heyman], the writer, because it’s very easy to make him one thing. But what he did, and what Vincent ran with, is he kind of is an artist. Even though he’s this manipulative pig, it’s all about the art. There’s a nice balance and complexity. That whole scene with Natalie when he tells her to go touch herself, it’s really not that out of line. It’s very aggressive, but he’s just trying to get on with it.

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