With the number of new hot takes on the Oscars sufficiently cooled down, now may be the best time to take a closer look at this year’s Best Picture winner in the context of an Oscar nominee from a previous year that covers surprisingly similar ground.
Miguel Branco has put together “Blackbird,” which plays shots from Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu’s technical marvel “Birdman” side-by-side with clips from Darren Aronofsky’s beautifully terrifying “Black Swan,” revealing the similar terrain of both films.
First of all, both films are essentially about the struggle of putting on a good show: a Raymond Carver adaptation for the stage in Inarritu’s film and a new version of the “Swan Lake” ballet in Aronfsky’s. The two main characters both have a rival who threatens to steal their moment in the spotlight. Both also put their protagonists through the ringer physically, mentally, and emotionally while diving headfirst into their unravelling psyche and, ultimately, both characters experience an unexplained transformation by the film’s end.
See the similarities for yourself by watching Branco’s video below, and with “Birdman” now on Blu-ray, there’s nothing stopping you from creating your double feature with “Black Swan.” In fact, throw in the Criteroin edition of Powell and Pressburger’s “The Red Shoes” and make it a triple feature of artists pushing themselves past the breaking point. [Live For Films]