Donnie Darko

Movies , Fantasy
  • 5 out of 5 stars
(1 user review)
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Donnie Darko

This flawed but promising debut from writer/director Kelly is like The Ice Storm with a surreal psychological twist. It’s 1988, and the title character (Gyllenhaal) is a moody adolescent in small town America. After a near fatal incident in which a jet engine falls on his house, Donnie suffers schizophrenic hallucinations of a spooky figure warning of imminent apocalypse. Kelly’s script is an over-ambitious mess, dragging in time travel, high school politics, premonition and the presidential chances of Michael Dukakis, but his assured direction compensates. The tone alternates nimbly between comedy and horror, and two early sequences combine music (Echo and the Bunnymen’s “Killing Moon” and Tears for Fears) and image to stunning effect.

Release details

Rated: R
Release date: Friday October 26 2001
Duration: 122 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Richard Kelly
Screenwriter: Richard Kelly
Cast: Noah Wyle
Katharine Ross
Drew Barrymore
Jake Gyllenhaal
Patrick Swayze
Mary McDonnell
James Duval
Holmes Osborne
Jena Malone

Average User Rating

5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

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NaN people listening
Kali D

No movie I have seen has shaped my life and reached me on such an emotional level as Donnie Darko. Everything from the cast to the soundtrack is absolutely perfect. I first saw this movie when I was a troubled teenager who felt they had no place in the world, now as a grown woman who has found meaning and passion, it is still my favourite movie. Donnie Darko reaches out to the types of people that enjoy the strange and unusual, most like those who enjoy Tim Burton's work, but can still be appreciated by grown audiences. Five stars to Donnie Darko for being truly original.