The video: Director Darren Aronofsky's ballet psychodrama, Black Swan, received five Oscar nominations, including Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Actress (Natalie Portman). It did not, however, get a nod for Best Visual Effects, despite the elaborate efforts required to transform Portman's ballerina character as she goes through a mental breakdown — an omission that has some observers crying "snub." Now, Black Swan's studio, Fox Searchlight, has released a video (view below) demonstrating the "dark visual effects" the production team created. (Spoiler warning: The video reveals key plot points.)
The reaction: "After checking out the CGI wizardry showcased in the clip," says Hugh Hart in Wired, "you'd be hard-pressed to understand the snub." This video is a reminder how "seamlessly" these cool visual effects were integrated into the film, says Paul Tassi at JoBlo. Some might argue that watching the video "sort of kills the movie magic," says Lex Walker at Just Press Play, but it also "helps you to appreciate all the technical skill" involved in making the movie so "striking in its skewing of reality with hallucination." See it for yourself:
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- 43 TV shows to watch in 2014
- Ted Cruz is the new Sarah Palin
- How to be the most productive person in your office — and still get home by 5:30 p.m.
- How liberals are unwittingly paving the way for the legalization of adult incest
- Watch out, China — America is working on dogfighting drones
- How the Simpsons/Family Guy crossover revealed the worst of both shows
- Fall film guide: All the movies you should see in October
- Why you probably don't have Ebola — even if you shook hands with America's 'patient zero'
- Bill O'Reilly and Stephen Colbert are accidentally having a serious debate on ISIS
- The dumb war in Syria will haunt Democrats' 2014 prospects
Subscribe to the Week