I'll admit, my reaction is pretty similar to everyone else's. My reaction being: holy fuck.
Okay, first of all, it was stunning. The cinematography, the way it was shot, the colours, everything was beautiful. Also, holy hell, this was a pretty cast. Natalie and Mila and Winona, girls. On a visual level, it was pitch perfect which is what made it all the more gruesome and jarring because you couldn't tear your eyes away from the screen. This movie made excellent casting choices as well. Everyone delivered and all the actors seemed to have a really good idea of what was required of them and of how big an impact they were required to make.
I don't think I'll ever be a Natalie Portman stan by any means, (still not sure if I exactly like her) but she did a great job in this. A very clever performance, very creepy and the final sequence was incredible. I thought Mila was excellent too. Out of the two, I have a lot more personal affection for Mila, so that probably has some bearing on my viewing of the film. In some ways, I think her role was more interesting, on a whole? At least up until the end, Natalie's character was primarily playing one or two central emotions and I thought she got the juxtaposition between Nina's desire to be perfect and her crippling fear of it really well, it was still just one performance to different degrees through out. Whereas Mila, I think was playing two different characters the whole time, in my opinion; the real Lilly and the Lilly in Nina's mind. And both of them really convincingly. I couldn't tell which of them was real till really late in the film.
And Winona. I love this girl (Jo March forever) and I'm so glad to see her back in the game. She was really good and terrifying and tragic and I felt for her character more than for anyone in the film. I'd actually have loved to see more of Beth and not just in context of Vincent Cassel. Which brings us to Vincent Cassel, who was one creepy motherfucker, oh, boy.
Also. Also. There was surprise CARTER BAIZEN. Things no one cared to warn me about. Sebastian Stan, you are one attractive boy. I was pleased to be confronted with your face for a few brief seconds and then, of course, I forgot all about you because Lily/Nina sex scene, which managed to be both hot and terrifying. Like a lot of parts of the film, I was kept entirely on edge by the score. Also fabulous.
Objectively, I could pick out flaws with some of the choices that the film made and there were parts (the bit with the paintings) that I thought almost pushed the envelope too far and veered into almost! campy but really, it delivered such a punch that I don't currently have the heart to take it apart. Also, can I just say that it was good to see a movie primarily about female characters? I know this movie wasn't stellar in it's representation of women but it wasn't a male dominated film. Things that I approve of.