Thursday, 24 February 2011

Movie Matters #6

The Movie Matters podcast continues with a Darren (REQUIEM FOR A DREAM) Aronofsky special, putting his latest film, the critically acclaimed BLACK SWAN, under the microscope, as well as his previous offering, the similarly acclaimed THE WRESTLER.

The music sampled in this episode is from BLACK SWAN (Clint Mansell/Piotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky) and THE WRESLTER (Clint Mansell), as well as the latest addition to the Blu-ray hall of fame. Special thanks to David Mackenzie for audio support.


  1. I'm a bit of an Aronofsky devotee.

    I first saw Pi when it was released in 1998 at the indie theater in Keene, NH while I attended college there and it was a very important experience.
    I had seen cult B&W indie films before (Clerks, Tetsuo: The Iron Man), but only on VHS, so seeing Pi in a cinema was eye opening.

    I honestly can't recall if I saw Requiem in the the theater (I want to say that I did not) and that's a shame. I don't need to talk about how great it is; I'm not in the minority. Once it was available on home video, Requiem, along with Pi was regular viewing for me.

    I saw The Fountain at the cinema when first released and I had mixed emotions about it. I heard about it being very devisive among critics, but I don't agree that it's pretentious and don't quite understand the hate aimed toward it. My second viewing found me appreciating it more and my third cemented my opinion that it is a great film, if beautifully flawed.

    I saw The Wrestler during its brief limited run in December 2008 and I was floored (ha ha).

    I saw Black Swan during its brief limited run in December 2010 and I was impressed, but not blown away, as I was hoping. I do like the film a great deal, but it didn't leave me beaming (as The Social Network did). I'm excited to revisit Black Swan on Blu-ray and I hope my opinion is elevated.
    I agree with you guys – I’ve seen a zillion Giallo films, but I never thought of Black Swan as being influenced by/similar to films of that ilk. The thought hadn’t even occurred to me until you two brought it up on the show. Even Repulsion seems like a loose influence – even though Natalie Portman is the focus of BS, it doesn’t reach the depths of solitude that Repulsion does, though the hallucinatory nature of scenes are similar..

    I'm not sure what my opinion is or what to expect re: Aronofsky making The Wolverine. I haven't seen the mostly critically panned previous Wolvie film and I just don't know how much interest I have left in the character or The X-Men in general.

  2. I agree with The Danman Can, The Fountain is definitely worth a rewatch, if not a number of repeat viewings.
    It's slowly worked its way into my mind as a complex film both emotionally, thematically and visually.
    Easily Aronofsky's most personal and ambitious project.

    Also I'm uncertain about Aronofsky's Wolverine project. Do we really need any more X-Men movies?
    I would have been much more intrigued by his Robocop reboot, but this looks like it's gone to Jose 'Elite Squad' Padilha now, which is no bad thing in my book.

  3. @Phurious

    I also find it fascinating that the majority of the effects in The Fountain were created using macro photography, with a very minimal amount of CG.

    Aronofsky's RoboCop probably would have been phenomenal, but let's hope this other fellow does a good job. I'd never heard of Padilha until now.


  5. As for the work of Aronofsky, I've only seen 'Pi' & 'Requiem For A Dream'. I remember liking 'Pi', but it's been almost 14 years since I saw it on VHS. With 'Requiem', I only liked 1/2 of it - the Ellen Burstyn half. The other sections were competent, but I have never liked Leto as an actor.

    I can't remember why I never saw 'The Fountain'. I remember it getting extremely mediocre to bad reviews & notices. I passed on 'The Wrestler' because Mickey Rourke really bothers me. I could barely even watch him in 'Sin City', his other comeback movie, & I also have a hard time watching his past work. As for 'Black Swan', it just seemed so overrated, so I didn't watch it in the theatre, & still haven't seen it.