Trailer Wednesday: Black Swan and Fair Game

Two-titles with two syllables are not this week’s theme. This Trailer Wednesday focuses on two films of the thriller genre, Darren Aronofsky’s (“Requiem for a Dream,” “The Wrestler”) latest film about rival ballet dancers and a film based on the true story of outed CIA agent Valerie Plame from Doug Liman, director of “The Bourne Identity.”

Black Swan

Darren Aronofsky is one of those few younger directors who has yet to fail (I rather enjoyed “The Fountain”), so don’t expect “Black Swan” to be an exception. At the very least, this will be a challenging, intriguing and unique film. In fact, when was the last time we saw an awards season film about ballet? “Billy Elliot?”

But from the looks of this trailer, “Black Swan” looks to be anything but just about ballet. Natalie Portman and Mila Kunis star as rival dancers for a ballet company, except one thing is clear in this trailer: something is messed up with Natalie. She’s got low self-esteem and is paranoid, among other things you’ll see by watching this trailer through the end. The trailer is consummate, one of the best of this year behind “The Social Network” and next year’s “Sucker Punch.” The question is whether the December 1 positioning will warrant it Academy attention. Even if not, you can bet Aronofsky will get his due one of these days.

“Black Swan” debuts at Venice opening night on Sept. 1 and will also be featured at the Toronto International Film Festival where it will start to generate North American Oscar buzz — if warranted.

Fair Game

It’s not often we get a true story about the CIA and “Fair Game” comes closest. Naomi Watts stars as Valerie Plame, a woman who was revealed through the press in 2003 to be a CIA operative, a career-destroying leak. Not long before, Plame’s husband, former ambassador Joseph Wilson (Sean Penn) had written a series of editorials published in the New York Times regarding his trip to Niger where he was asked to inquire about whether they were selling any uranium abroad, specifically to Iraq, and Wilson questioned the basis of that information. He believed Valerie was getting punished for his First Amendment actions.

The history is a little confusing, but the film sounds intriguing. Watts and Penn are fine talents and they’re being directed by Doug Liman (“The Bourne Identity”), so all the credentials are there. The film was already leaked at Cannes this year and early response has been decent with a 6.9/10 on imdb. Find out for yourself starting November 5.

1 Comment

  1. Avatar was astounding in 3D. I really urge people see it if you didn’t yet. I went to the theater 5 times!

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