On February 12, director Darren Aronofsky celebrates his 51st birthday. During his career, he made only seven full-length films, but each of them became a major event in the world of cinema. The Challenger explains why these paintings are worth seeing at least once in a lifetime.
Darren Aronofsky was born in Brooklyn (New York. - Ed.
), in the family of teachers. After graduating from high school, he entered Harvard, where he studied anthropology, film and animation. During this time, the future director managed to shoot two short films: " Supermarket Cleaning "and" Cookies with Predictions ". After he received a bachelor of arts degree with honors.
Darren Aronofsky’s attitude to art was greatly influenced by the work of Stanley Kubrick, Martin Scorsese and, of course, David Lynch - their work Darren knows by heart.
Aronofsky cleverly teeters on the brink of art house and mass cinema, calling himself an "independent director", but without losing the opportunity to get into the world of high-budget films. He knows how to attract the best actors to the shooting, he knows how to impress critics and shock the audience. Where to start acquaintance with Aronofsky’s filmography, if for some reason his work passed you by?
Aronofsky’s full-length debut. The budget of this film was only 60 thousand dollars, and Darren spent part of the amount out of his pocket. The plot of the tape resembles a surreal nightmare in which the brilliant mathematician Maximilian Cohen tries to find a logical code from the Universe.
Despite the fact that the modest budget of the picture negatively affected the image quality, the film was warmly greeted at the Sundance Festival (American National Film Festival of Independent Cinema. - approx. Ed. ), and at the box office it collected as many as 3.2 million dollars! So all the few investors remained in the black, and Aronofsky got funds for the following projects.
Why watch? To find out what a low-budget, but very cool movie is.
Second film Aronofsky appeared at the box office three years after Pi. It was a film adaptation of the novel by Hubert Selby Jr.: a gloomy and piercing story of people who got addicted to drugs and were unable to break the vicious circle. There is no propaganda of prohibited substances in the film, and Aronofsky himself in one of the interviews called his Requiem a film about any addictions - from cigarettes to social networks.
The actors, among whom was the young Jared Leto, played excellently: the characters of Requiem for a Dream do not just cause sympathy - they make the audience experience horror and think about what would happen to them in a similar situation. A slender visual range is complemented by the tear-stained composition Lux Aeterna, which has become a hit.
Why watch? To make sure: any obsession can be deadly. And also in order to enjoy the game of young Jared Leto and great music.
In this Darren Aronofsky decided to touch on the complex subject of life and death.
He succeeded or not, you can find out by looking at the viscous, gloomy, philosophical "Fountain", which many want to quit watching in the middle. Aronofsky himself “mastered” this film not the first time either: according to the initial idea, Brad Pitt and Cate Blanchett were to star in the lead roles, but Pitt left the project because of creative disagreements with the director. As a result, the idea went on the shelf and stayed there until Hugh Jackman was approved for the main role. True, the budget of the film was ultimately halved, and Darren had to abandon special effects. Despite the positive reviews from critics, the box failed at the box office: not all viewers were able to imbue the philosophical plot of Fontana.
But the soundtrack of the picture (its was written by composer Clint Mansell, who worked on the music for Requiem for a Dream and Pi), on the contrary, impressed many - the film was nominated for the Golden Globe Award for best music.
Why watch? To enjoy how brilliantly he plays the role of Hugh Jackman (by the way, he specially shaved his hair), listen to amazing music and make sure that incredible movie worlds can be created without huge budgets for special effects.
This 2008 film received the Golden Lion, an honorary prize from the 65th Venice Film Festival. The main role in “Wrestler” went to Mickey Rourke, who by then had time to forget and was almost written off. Aronofsky’s bet turned out to be successful: usually the unyielding Rourke this time worked in good faith, and while Darren was busy with the budget, Mickey mastered wrestling.
As a result, a character appeared on the screen, which it is impossible not to believe. Rourke, in fact, told his own story: about the life of a star unfairly forgotten by others. The story touched both critics and spectators.
Why watch? To witness the "second birth" of the legendary Mickey Rourke and learn more about the cruel world of sports.
Against the background previous films, the film about the difficult life of ballerinas may seem “gentle” and “feminine,” although there are enough hard scenes in “Black Swan”.
This time, critics unanimously urged Darren to "learn the materiel": the ballet scenes turned out to be unconvincing - at least for connoisseurs. At the same time, the topic for the American audience turned out to be new, and all the salt was not at all in dancing: Aronofsky got a powerful psychological thriller with Natalie Portman in the title role. Her diploma in psychology was most opportune: the main character causes not just gamma, but a whole storm of emotions - from sympathy to disgust. So, despite all the “buts,” the film rightly received five Oscar nominations and deservedly took the statuette for the main female role.
Why watch? For the sake of the brilliant game of Natalie Portman and the unpredictable plot.
in 2014 Aronofsky presented his version of the history of the Flood to the audience. He gathered in one "ark" Russell Crowe, Jennifer Connelly, Emma Utson and Anthony Hopkins. Nice composition! The story turned out to be epic, and critics greeted it with approval. As for the audience, their 135 minutes of the film were somewhat tired: “Noah” paid off at the box office, but did not get on the lists of “best of the best” - the main complaint was the distortion of the biblical plot. In general, Darren was again advised to "learn materiel.
Why watch? To appreciate the acting (and even the powerful special effects) and try to unravel the director’s intention.
Last so far Aronofsky's film was released in 2017. In the case of "mom!" Darren acted not only as a director, but also as a screenwriter. The result was a thriller with elements of horror - tough, mystical, scary and depressing. The cast is again starred: Javier Bardem, Jennifer Lawrence, Michelle Pfeiffer, Ed Harris and others.
Film critics from The Guardian newspaper rated the film 10 out of 10, noting that "like a machine to drive you crazy, it's great."
Why watch? To tickle your nerves and test yourself for strength.
Aronofsky’s films are not left without attention. Each of them impresses both viewers and critics. The director’s work can be treated differently: some of his films are admired, others are left at a loss.
We can say with confidence: they cause emotions. But isn't that what we all want when we click on the play button?