Telluride Review: Darren Aronofsky’s Black Swan

Before Darren Aronofsky left the stage at the 37th Telluride Film Festival in the introduction of his new film, Black Swan, he apologized to the crowd: “I’m really sorry. I want to apologize for what’s about to happen… I didn’t know what I was doing…” With that he walked off stage and the lights went down. Aronofsky’s apology was directed at people like the older couple seated to my right. Maybe they were lured in by the star power of Natalie Portman, the story of a ballet dancer, or possibly because they loved that movie about the professional wrestler and the stripper. Whatever the reason, they had no idea what they were getting themselves into. And why should they? Black Swan is unlike anything I’ve ever seen before.

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We last reported on the grassroots campaign to earn Sam Rockwell an Oscar nomination for his… er… role in Moon back in October. “Sony Pictures Classics isn’t likely to put money into an awards campaign” said Peter at the time.

Today, Duncan Jones has been all of a Twitter about the matter and it seems there’s one big problem in particular with Sony’s plans for the picture. Unfortunately, it seems that Sony won’t send out screener copies as, according to a Tweet by Jones, “they say it costs too much for our little film as they would need to be water-marked copies as our DVD isn’t out yet in the US.”

A ludicrous argument, really, as the UK BD is region free and in plentiful supply, besides, they wouldn’t benefit from making watermarked copies where there’s already perfectly good non-watermarked copies out there to be pirated. Copyright thieves know no borders and will rob Jones, Sony and everybody else associated with the film from any source. It’s not like they’re waiting for an R1 NTSC copy.

So, what is Duncan Jones planning to do himself?
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At the very least, each of Clint Mansell’s movie scores strengthens the film it accompanies and at the very best, his music works extraordinarily both in the picture and as standalone listening. With Lux Aeterna, his most astonishing cue from the Requiem for a Dream soundtrack, he managed to write one of the most beloved, discussed and arguably overplayed pieces of film music in the medium’s entire history.

After a career in the band Pop Will Eat Itself, Mansell’s first two scores were for Darren Aronfosky‘s Pi and Requiem for a Dream, and he’s gone on to write the music for every one of Aronfosky’s films since. That will continue, unsurprisingly but still thankfully, with Aronfosky’s next movie, Black Swan.

If you’re not up on Black Swan, and perhaps know it only as the film where Natalie Portman and Mila Kunis are going to have an ‘intense’ bedroom scene, we’ve done our best to cover all news about the film here at /Film. Some good holiday time reading for you there.

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In this special episode of the /Filmcast, Dan Trachtenberg from The Totally Rad Show joins David Chen to geek out about their favorite soundtracks. To listen to all of the songs that Dan mentioned during this episode in their entirety, click here to go to Grooveshark. To listen to all of the songs that Dave Chen mentioned during this episode, click here.

Like what you hear? Want to hear similar episodes in the future? Send feedback to slashfilmcast(AT)gmail(DOT)com or call and leave a voicemail at 781-583-1993. One correction to note: the last track that is played, “Fantasia on a Theme By Thomas Tallis” was composed by Ralph Vaughn Williams. Eugene Ormany, who we mention, conducts the orchestral performance.

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Update: Some people have reported experiencing audio problems with this sound file. Please try downloading the file to your computer, rather than playing it in your browser. That should fix the problem (If it does not, shoot me an e-mail or leave a comment below). Thanks!
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First Look: Sam Rockwell’s Sci-Fi Thriller Moon

Bloody Disgusting has a first look at Sam Rockwell in the upcoming sci-fi film Moon. Rockwell stars as Sam Bell, an Astronaut who has been mining Helium 3 on the moon three years alone. With only two weeks before he returns home, Sam begins seeing and hearing things.

Did I mention that Kevin Spacey provides the voice of the robot? Also, Clint Mansell (Requiem for a Dream, The Fountain) is doing the score. I’ve included some of the photos above and below, but head on over to BloodyD for the whole batch of photos. I’m a big fan of old school space sci-fi, and photos like this get me very excited. I can’t wait to see a trailer.

Sure, Darren Aronofsky‘s new film The Wrestler is set to premiere at the Venice Film Festival on September 5th, but I’m sadly not going to be there to see it. But I’m excited to report that the film will also be playing at the Toronto International Film Festival two days later. And yes, we will be there to file a report.

Clint Mansell (Requiem for a Dream) recorded his score for the film last week in Los Angeles. Apparently Slash, formerly from Guns and Roses provided some guitar work. Aronofsky writes “he really tore it up.” And apparently there is “another musical surprise” but we won’t find out until next week.

Aronofsky’s The Wrestler tells the story of a old professional wrestler (Mickey Rourke) barely making a living on the independent circuit, who is told by a doctor that he could die if he wrestles again. Marisa Tomei plays a stripper friend named Cassidy and Evan Rachel Wood plays his estranged daughter Stephanie.

Cool Posts From Around the Web:

VOTD: Requiem For A Day Off

Requiem For A Day Off by Shakes McFadden

The Pitch: Shakes McFadden has created a new Ferris Bueller’s Day Off trailer using the music from Requiem for a Dream, proving once again that any movie can be 100 times more epic when you add Clint Mansell’s lux aeterna to the soundtrack. Note: the full orchestral remix is also used.

Watch More Cool Videos Here!

Video of the Day is a daily feature of /Film showcasing geekarific video creations. Have a video we should be feature on VOTD? E-Mail us at

American Babylon A.D. Movie Trailer

Babylon A.D.

Earlier today we brought you the international teaser trailer for Transporter 3, and now we have the first American trailer from another French film Babylon A.D.

Mathieu Kassovitz‘s (Gothika) sci-fi action thriller stars Vin Diesel as Thoorop, a veteran-turned-mercenary who takes the high-risk job of escorting a woman from Russia to China. Little does he know that she is host to an organism that a cult wants to harvest in order to produce a genetically modified Messiah. I’m not really expecting this film to be the next Children of Men, but I love watching big budget futuristic sci fi action films. The fact that Fox might have forced Kassovitz to cut the film down substantially probably isn’t a good sign. It still looks like it might be a fun popcorn film, and how can you go wrong with Clint Mansell‘s awesome (and yes, overused) Requiem score for a trailer soundtrack?

You can also watch the trailer in High Definition on IGN. Babylon A.D. will hit theaters on August 29th 2008.

Definitely, Maybe International Movie Trailer

Definitely, Maybe Movie Trailer

The international movie trailer for Definitely, Maybe has hit the interwebs. I know, it’s another romantic comedy… But this one has a cast that has gotten my attention. With Rachel Weisz, Elizabeth Banks and Isla Fisher as the three romantic leads, at least you’ll have something to look at. And with Little Miss Sunshine‘s Abigail Breslin at least the little kid cute factor is turned up to 10. Kevin Kline and Derek Luke also star. And Requiem for a Dream composer Clint Mansell did the score (let’s hope it’s not that cheesy sentimental music bed in the background of the trailer).

[flv: 470 200]

Definitely, Maybe stars Ryan Reynolds as Will Hayes, a 30-something Manhattan dad, is in the midst of a divorce when his 10-year-old daughter, Maya, starts to question him about his life before marriage. His story begins in 1992, as a 24 year-old starry-eyed aspiring politician who moves from Wisconsin to New York to work on the presidential campaign. Will relives his career ups and downs and personal trials and tribulations as he tells Maya about his three most meaningful relationships. As Maya attempts to figure out which of the women became her mother she begins to understand the complexity of love and Will realizes that it’s never too late to go back.

Listen, I’m not saying that Definitely, Maybe will be a good movie, but it has the chance to be definitely maybe okay. And your girlfriend will probably eat it up.