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as of: 6/14/05

Donnie Darko



out of 10


Richard Kelly


Jake Gyllenhaal .... Donnie Darko
Holmes Osborne .... Eddie Darko
Maggie Gyllenhaal .... Elizabeth Darko
Daveigh Chase .... Samantha Darko
Mary McDonnell .... Mrs. Rose Darko
James Duval .... Frank
Arthur Taxier .... Dr. Fisher
Patrick Swayze .... Jim Cunningham
Mark Hoffman .... Police Officer
David St. James .... Bob Garland
Tom Tangen .... Man in Red Jogging Suit
Jazzie Mahannah .... Joanie James
Jolene Purdy .... Cherita Chen
Stuart Stone .... Ronald Fisher
Gary Lundy .... Sean Smith
Alex Greenwald .... Seth Devlin
Beth Grant .... Kitty Farmer
Jena Malone .... Gretchen Ross
Seth Rogen .... Ricky Danforth
David Moreland .... Principal Cole
Noah Wyle .... Prof. Kenneth Monnitoff
Drew Barrymore .... Karen Pomeroy
Kristina Malota .... Susie Bates
Marina Malota .... Emily Bates
Carly Naples .... Suzy Bailey
Tiler Peck .... Beth Farmer
Patience Cleveland .... Roberta Sparrow/Grandma Death


This movie made me think, and that's always a good thing in my book. Richard Kelly doesn't dumb things down and assumes his audience is intelligent and is looking to think. I watched it on a Friday afternoon, and it is still with me as I write this on a Tuesday. Donnie Darko is an excellent film. I've placed it in my Horror section, but it could have just as easily been placed in a Drama or a Sci-Fi area. It has elements of all three. Jake Gyllenhaal stars as Donnie Darko, the eponymous troubled teen who starts seeing a scary-looking large talking bunny. Oh, by the way, the bunny's name is Frank, and he says the world is coming to an end in 28 days, 6 hours, 42 minutes, and 12 seconds. If that isn't weird enough, just after talking to Frank, a large jet engine hits Donnie's house and crashes through his room right where he would have been sleeping if Frank the Bunny hadn't called him outside. In the early going we get to see Donnie in his natural environment, among his family and friends. We learn he is going to a therapist for emotional problems, and that sets up the rest of the movie and the questions that inevitably follow as you watch. Is this real? Is Donnie hallucinating? Dreaming? He does manages to pick up a girlfriend despite his troubles, and he also has several other good friends. I'm going to purposely keep things vague and leave you here, as this movie is best seen without too much prior knowledge. The end makes you think, and invites more than one interpretation. Watching with the director's commentary turned on during a second viewing wouldn't hurt. Despite my high rating of 8/10, I don't think this one is for everybody. I definitely recommend renting this. I know I'll remember this movie and its message for a long time to come.


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