October 25, 2016
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“Black Swan” reactions from early Venice press screening

By Sean O’Connell

Hollywoodnews.com: Darren Aronofsky’s ballet drama “Black Swan” will open the Venice Film Festival tonight. But press members attending this year’s festival were in a screening this morning and opinions already are starting to flood the Internet. Embargoes be damned!

If you’d like to avoid spoilers, please click away from this page.

Most seemed to really enjoy Aronofsky’s bold vision, even as they claimed the film is really, really out there.

Variety compared it to early Polanski or Cronenberg. Seriously, stop right there. Why say any more? That makes it a must see. Period. But the mag adds that this is Aronosky “at his most operatic” delivering a “wicked, sexy and ultimately devastating study of a young dancer’s all-consuming ambition.”

The Hollywood Reporter was less impressed, saying “The movie is so damn out-there in every way that you can’t help admiring Aronofsky for daring to be so very, very absurd.” However, the review concludes with, “White Swan/Black Swan dynamics almost work, but the horror-movie nonsense drags everything down the rabbit hole of preposterousness.”

Twitter also is all aflutter with “Black Swan” reactions, so stay off the social media tool if you want to go into Aronofsky’s dance-world drama pure.

I’m a little over a week away from seeing the film with my own eyes. To say I can’t wait is a disgusting understatement.

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About Sean O'Connell

Sean O'Connell is a nationally recognized film critic. His reviews have been published in print ('The Washington Post,' 'USA Today') and online (AMC FilmCritic.com, MSN's Citysearch) since 1996. He's a weekly contributor to several national radio programs. He is a longstanding member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS), and the Southeastern Film Critics View all articles by Sean O'Connell Association (SEFCA).

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