Donnie Darko (2001)
Critic Consensus: Richard Kelly's debut feature Donnie Darko is a daring, original vision, packed with jarring ideas and intelligence and featuring a remarkable performance from Jake Gyllenhaal as the troubled title character.
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Critic Reviews for Donnie Darko
Kelly is a supple and courageous storyteller, boldly free-associating as he mixes parody and satire with earnest psychodrama and coming up with plot points no one could anticipate.
Donnie Darko has plenty of problems. But most stem from a young filmmaker overswinging on his first time up to the plate and hitting a deep fly out rather than a home run.
A stunning technical accomplishment that virtually bursts with noise, ideas and references.
First-time director-writer Richard Kelly draws on a number of intriguing elements ... without including a single, crucial gem that pulls everything together.
Audience Reviews for Donnie Darko
A smart high schooler realizes 1) that his schmarts sets him forever apart from mainstream society, 2) a society which ain't all that much to begin with and more, which hates him for his schmarts, and so 3) he concocts a plan to do something about it. A stunning debut for writer/director Richard Kelly, a poetic and apt critique of society (if obvious), as well as decent filmmaking to boot. What more do you want?
Incredible movie, completely underrated. Donnie Darko is the most unlikely hero of the small town of Middlesex in this amazing, original film. It may require more than one viewing to understand it. I highly recommend watching the director's cut.
I'm not sure what I'm supposed to come away from Donnie Darko with, I would say that this is a very clever film, or a very clueless one. ( I Think) When it begins everything that follows for the next hundred minutes has happened already. That's one way to look at it. Another way would be to see it as pure surrealism like John Carpenter's In The Mouth of Madness or David Lynch's Mullholland Dr. Such films are conundrums, but the question is whether or not you are capable of watching a movie that leaves you frustrated intentionally. If surrealism is your thing, you will probably have luck with Donnie Darko. It is a good one for a movie goer. Up until the climax, we are led to believe that this is a film about a young suburban middle- class boy (Donnie) who has schizophrenia and one night envisions a large satanic looking rabbit (the anti-Harvey) to tells him to do some pretty bad things if he wants to survive the end of the world in 28 days, something hours and something seconds. The people in this film are weird, though not as much so as Mulholland Dr. (In part because the acting here is more toned down, usually) One could argue though that there are too many characters. Some of the screen time that is dedicated to the supporting cast could have gone to Donnies story, which is more important. His conversations with Frank (the rabbit) are intriguing but they are too short and too few. The climax is one that takes Donnie Darko and turns it inside out. There is no literal resolution to the thriller side of Donnie Darko, only what the viewer chooses to make of it. Is it a great movie? no, but its partial originality and evocative direction are enough to make it worth a watch. 1/2 Star 1-15-2004 (Updated)
Donnie Darko Quotes
|Donnie Darko:||First of all, Papa Smurf didn't create Smurfette. Gargamel did. She was sent in as Gargamel's evil spy with the intention of destroying the Smurf village. But the overwhelming goodness of the Smurf way of life transformed her. And as for the whole gang-bang scenario - It just couldn't happen. Smurfs are asexual. They don't even have reproductive organs under those little white pants. That's what's so illogical, you know, about being a Smurf. What's the point of living... if you don't have a dick?|
|Donnie Darko:||If God Controlled time, then the time is pre-decided|
|Donnie Darko:||I just hope, that when the world comes to an end, I can breathe a sigh of relief...because there will be so much to look forward to.|
|Donnie Darko:||I just hope, that when the world comes to an end, I can breathe a sigh of relief... because there will be so much to look forward to.|