8.0/10
618,581
1,189 user 674 critic

Black Swan (2010)

Trailer
2:18 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Prime Video

ON DISC
A committed dancer wins the lead role in a production of Tchaikovsky's "Swan Lake" only to find herself struggling to maintain her sanity.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay) (as Andrés Heinz) | 2 more credits »
Popularity
510 ( 180)
Won 1 Oscar. Another 91 wins & 257 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Harvard student Mark Zuckerberg creates the social networking site that would become known as Facebook, but is later sued by two brothers who claimed he stole their idea, and the co-founder who was later squeezed out of the business.

Director: David Fincher
Stars: Jesse Eisenberg, Andrew Garfield, Justin Timberlake
Her (2013)
Drama | Romance | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

In a near future, a lonely writer develops an unlikely relationship with an operating system designed to meet his every need.

Director: Spike Jonze
Stars: Joaquin Phoenix, Amy Adams, Scarlett Johansson
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

After a stint in a mental institution, former teacher Pat Solitano moves back in with his parents and tries to reconcile with his ex-wife. Things get more challenging when Pat meets Tiffany, a mysterious girl with problems of her own.

Director: David O. Russell
Stars: Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Robert De Niro
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A washed-up actor, who once played an iconic superhero, attempts to revive his career by writing and starring in his very own Broadway play.

Director: Alejandro G. Iñárritu
Stars: Michael Keaton, Zach Galifianakis, Edward Norton
Life of Pi (2012)
Adventure | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A young man who survives a disaster at sea is hurtled into an epic journey of adventure and discovery. While cast away, he forms an unexpected connection with another survivor: a fearsome Bengal tiger.

Director: Ang Lee
Stars: Suraj Sharma, Irrfan Khan, Adil Hussain
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A Mumbai teen reflects on his upbringing in the slums when he is accused of cheating on the Indian Version of "Who Wants to be a Millionaire?"

Directors: Danny Boyle, Loveleen Tandan
Stars: Dev Patel, Freida Pinto, Saurabh Shukla
Gravity (2013)
Drama | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Two astronauts work together to survive after an accident which leaves them stranded in space.

Director: Alfonso Cuarón
Stars: Sandra Bullock, George Clooney, Ed Harris
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

During World War II, the English mathematical genius Alan Turing tries to crack the German Enigma code with help from fellow mathematicians.

Director: Morten Tyldum
Stars: Benedict Cumberbatch, Keira Knightley, Matthew Goode
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

The drug-induced utopias of four Coney Island people are shattered when their addictions run deep.

Director: Darren Aronofsky
Stars: Ellen Burstyn, Jared Leto, Jennifer Connelly
The Revenant (2015)
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A frontiersman on a fur trading expedition in the 1820s fights for survival after being mauled by a bear and left for dead by members of his own hunting team.

Director: Alejandro G. Iñárritu
Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hardy, Will Poulter
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

In 1985 Dallas, electrician and hustler Ron Woodroof works around the system to help AIDS patients get the medication they need after he is diagnosed with the disease.

Director: Jean-Marc Vallée
Stars: Matthew McConaughey, Jennifer Garner, Jared Leto
Biography | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A look at the relationship between the famous physicist Stephen Hawking and his wife.

Director: James Marsh
Stars: Eddie Redmayne, Felicity Jones, Tom Prior
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Nina Sayers / The Swan Queen
... Lily / The Black Swan
... Thomas Leroy / The Gentleman
... Erica Sayers / The Queen
... Beth Macintyre / The Dying Swan
... David / The Prince
... Veronica / Little Swan
... Galina / Little Swan
... Madeline / Little Swan
... Andrew / Suitor
... Tom / Suitor
Sergio Torrado ... Sergio / Rothbart
... Mr. Fithian / Patron
... Mrs. Fithian / Patron
Abraham Aronofsky ... Mr. Stein / Patron (as Abe Aronofsky)
Edit

Storyline

Nina (Portman) is a ballerina in a New York City ballet company whose life, like all those in her profession, is completely consumed with dance. She lives with her obsessive former ballerina mother Erica (Hershey) who exerts a suffocating control over her. When artistic director Thomas Leroy (Cassel) decides to replace prima ballerina Beth MacIntyre (Ryder) for the opening production of their new season, Swan Lake, Nina is his first choice. But Nina has competition: a new dancer, Lily (Kunis), who impresses Leroy as well. Swan Lake requires a dancer who can play both the White Swan with innocence and grace, and the Black Swan, who represents guile and sensuality. Nina fits the White Swan role perfectly but Lily is the personification of the Black Swan. As the two young dancers expand their rivalry into a twisted friendship, Nina begins to get more in touch with her dark side - a recklessness that threatens to destroy her. Written by Fox Searchlight Pictures

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexual content, disturbing violent images, language and some drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

17 December 2010 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El cisne negro  »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$13,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,443,809, 5 December 2010, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$106,954,678

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$329,398,046
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Days before the DVD/Blu-Ray release, director Darren Aronofsky counteracted accusations made by dancer Sarah Lane, in which she claimed Natalie Portman got credit for her dancing in the film, stating "I am responding to this to put this to rest and to defend my actor. Natalie sweated long and hard to deliver a great physical and emotional performance. And I don't want anyone to think that's not her they are watching. It is." Co-star Mila Kunis also counteracted Lane's comments, "Lane wasn't used for everything. It was more like a safety net. If Natalie wasn't able to do something, you'd have a safety net. The same thing that I had - I had a double as a safety net. We all did. No one ever denied it." See more »

Goofs

In the opening, where Nina is referring to the Bolshoi choreography: Originally the overture is played with curtains closed; to show Rothbart cursing Odette is a late, American invention from ca 2000. Some ballet companies have picked this up but not the great Russian companies, Bolshoi or Marinsky who stay true to the original. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Nina Sayers: I had the craziest dream last night. I was dancing the White Swan.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Saturday Night Live: Russell Brand/Chris Brown (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Dark Sygnet
Written by Jermaine Troy Jacob
Performed by Jakes
Contains "Swan Lake" written by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

Engaging psychological horror despite not being as "high-brow" as the ballet frame suggests
31 January 2011 | by See all my reviews

Esteemed IMDb writer Theo Robertson messaged me the other day about this film and, while I skimmed it for fear of having him influence me in terms of his opinion, I did read that several older people had walked out of this film, seemingly having expected some sort of high-brow film with its roots in ballet. One can understand why because with all the award buzz and the superficial subject matter (ballet) combined with the actress and of course the previous work of the director, this must surely be an intelligent piece to be "appreciated" and "considered". What one wouldn't expect would be a film that, with a bit more gore, could easily be just another trashy horror/thriller that is released on video and has plenty of sex, violence and jump scares to it.

Well, got news for you, this is what Black Swan is – albeit a superior example of the genre. Essentially our lead character struggles to get in touch with her dark side when she wins the lead in Swan Lake, gradually losing touch with reality and/or being hunted by those around her who wish her harm. This manifests itself through some painful scenes of self-harm, imagined doppelgangers, intense sexual discovery, shadowy figures and a domineering mother who keeps her controlling menace under a veil of vulnerability that only falls here or there. It is trashy stuff in a way but it is done very well so that it produces this genre material but does so in a way that feels slightly classy while also engaging more than it would thanks to a brilliant turn by Portman.

And she is brilliant. I understand the mother because of how well Portman plays – this is not a character she has worked on for a few months, this feels like a product of years under the influence of this mother. She is nervous to her core, frustrated by her own inability to be this "thing" that she has spent her life not being – wild, loose, imperfect. Portman nails it and while I don't think it is a brilliant film, her performance is little less than brilliant. In support Hersey is equally as good with less time to do it. The flickers across her face say so much and I was impressed that with so little I was able to understand roughly what had happened in the previous 20 years. Cassel is simplistic but effective in his predatory director turn. Kunis is unbelievably sexual and again she helps the lead role by showing us everything that Nina struggles to find in herself. Ryder is solid in a smaller role. Aronofsky's direction is strong but particularly impressive is the cinematography – the camera flows so well around the scenes (and yet appears in no mirrors). I think he knows he is making a horror movie so, although he embraces the ballet, he doesn't avoid the shock or the build of the horror.

Some have embraced this film as art and a thing of beauty – while others have come away disappointed because that is what they expected it to be but didn't find it. However Black Swan is an effective psychological horror movie that just happens to be set in the world of ballet. As such it is very much a genre movie even if the director etc lift it to feel like more. In particular Portman makes the film – I cannot think I have seen her better and her Oscar (can there be doubt?) will be deserved.


26 of 35 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 1,189 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page