Donnie Darko

I love this movie.  I discovered Donnie Darko on video shortly after its release in 2001. Then I had the pleasure of attending a director’s cut screening in Rhinebeck, NY a few years after it gained a cult following. I actually prefer the original version which I own on DVD. Darko is Richard Kelly’s first film out of school. It’s a masterpiece. It’s edgy, sexy, complicated, baffling, funny, corny, twisted, all the things I love in a film. Is Donnie really schizophrenic or is he experiencing an alternate reality? Or is it something completely different? Only you can figure that out. Taking place in 1988, Donnie Darko sports a killer 80’s soundtrack as well as pop culture references of everything from Michael Dukakis to the Smurfs. Donnie Darko put Jake Gyllenhaal on the map. It also introduced audiences to Maggie Gyllenhaal and featured the best cast in a film of the past 15 years…. Jena Malone (Saved!, Contact), Beth Grant (Sordid Lives), Mary McDonnell (Matewan), Noah Wylie (E.R.), Drew Barrymore (who produced), James Duval, you’ll even see Seth Rogen and Ashley Tisdale if you don’t blink as well as the return of Katherine Ross (The GraduateButch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid) as Donnie’s therapist. Can’t say enough about this film. It’s a modern-day classic and an absolute 5 out of 5. See if you can watch this and not chuckle over Cellar Door or Sparkle Motion a month or even a year later. This is the kind of film that lives in you for a very long time.

10/31/2017: Boom! Donnie Darko lives on Netflix. If you haven’t caught this film yet, please move it to the top of your queue. 5 out of 5 for this eternal classic.


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