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Tuesday, 1 February 2011

I Saw: Black Swan

Darren Aronofsky's latest film is an ode to fear; fear of the body, sex, relationships and not being perfect. Natalie Portman's Nina is icy and beautiful but lives in fear and pain, her mental health deteriorates as her pain and fear increases driven by a controlling mother.

At points the characters are superficial and clich├ęd, for example Lily - Mila Kunis - shows that she is a sexually liberated character by wearing her hair down during training sessions and Nina's extensive collection of infantile stuffed toys serves to show us her sexual repression. However, the claustrophobic shots of the New York interiors and the closeup camera movements during the hallucination sequences draw the spectator to the inner breakdown of the dancer's mind.

I missed the punch packed by Pi (1998) and Requiem for a Dream (2000) Aronofsky seems to want to create a film somewhat more glossy and attractive to a larger audience both in Black Swan and his previous film The Wrestler (2008).

Pulling punches and attracting larger audiences at the same time is a tall order.

One to watch.

Miss de Castro

Sunday, 5 December 2010

I saw: Monsters

Monsters by Gareth Edwards, a complete new comer (his IMDb page is not even filled in), has created a really exciting sci-fi film. With a shoestring budget, it is interesting to notice that this film was produced by UK studio Vertigo. In fact the cinematography and the production value are impressive.

This film does well what James Cameron can not do, the special effects don't draw attention to themselves, they are there just to tell a story. The tentacled aliens are just a part of the general scenery of destruction. In a way it follows the lead from District 6 (Neill Blomkamp), where the aliens seem to just be another type of alienated beings, there only to be hated and feared by the white overclass.

One to watch.

Miss de Castro

Saturday, 4 December 2010

The Music Video is still exciting

In the past the music video has been the entry point for many directors, for example Jonathan Glazer directed videos for a range of artists (Radiohead, Massive Attack, Bjork...) and went on to direct "Birth".

This website discusses contemporary music videos http://bugvideos.co.uk/ that hopefully will inspire you to create and question film. They also run competitions that you might be able to enter.


Miss de Castro

Sunday, 28 November 2010

The Best Films of the Noughties

Do you agree? Would you choose different films?

Whose list is this? The producers', the critics' or the audiences'?

Have a read.


Friday, 19 November 2010

Hollywood at its most absurd?

This film, incredibly named "Cowboys and Aliens", is coined by Steven Spielberg's dream factory and is expected to be the next big blockbuster. The premise is so mesmerising I am thoroughly curious and will be going to see it. I will reserve judgement until afterwards but I am not hopeful...

Let me know what you think, follow the link below to get to the trailer.


Saturday, 6 November 2010


By now you are aware that we are comparing these two american films.

Your mission is to research the internet to find any articles that compare the films.
Alternatively, you might find articles that give us information about either of the two films, the blaxploitation film movement or the link between that movement and Quentin Tarantino's work.

Post your findings as comments (copy the web address), and you will immediately create a library of resources for everyone in the class to use when it comes to revise for your exam.

Miss de Castro