Saturday, March 08, 2014

CWE: "Donnie Darko" (2001)

Skipped: "Dollhouse" season 1

Summary: A young man wakes up after a night of sleepwalking to discover that an airplane engine has fallen through the roof of his family's house and would have killed him had he been in bed. He is plagued by visions of a man in a rabbit costume who tells him that the world is going to end in 28 days, 06 hours, 42 minutes, and 12 seconds, and manipulates him into committing a series of criminal acts.
  • I think this is the theatrical version, not the director's cut. I'm not sure if I've seen the director's cut...actually, maybe that was what we saw in the theater the one time.
  • This is, unquestionably, one of my favorite movies ever. I first saw it randomly on TV; well, not exactly randomly. I had just seen "Secretary" and fallen in love with it, and was actively looking for other movies with Maggie Gyllenhaal. I saw that she was in this and found it on TV (I think) and was immediately caught up in it.
  • One thing that I love most of all is the issue of mental illness and exactly what's wrong with Donnie -- if anything actually is. Well, obviously something's wrong, but the question of whether what Donnie is experiencing is actually part of his illness or if it's something supernatural (or both) is up for debate for most of the movie. And, really, even after the movie ends. So much is up for interpretation.
  • OK, I probably shouldn't have read the FAQ on IMDB, which gives a lot of "answers" to the questions in the movie. Lots of discussion about beings from the future. I prefer the openness.
  • Seth Rogan is in this movie? I need to keep an eye out for him. OH -- actually, I looked up and there he is, in Donnie's class.
  • "Wake up, Donnie."
  • There is the question of how Donnie does what he does -- he shouldn't be able to break the water main or put the axe in the head of the dog statue. I remember hearing something -- probably in the commentary -- that Donnie is essentially a superhero. It goes with the "beings from the future" idea, that they've given him special powers in order to end the tangent universe and allow the primary universe to survive.
  • I have such weird mixed feelings about so many actors in this movie. Jenna Malone has never been one of my favorites. And before "Battlestar Galactica," I was not a Mary McDonnell fan. But Patrick Swayze! Beth Grant!
  • And now we start talking about time travel.
  • Oh, "Attitudinal Beliefs"
  • Hee, the original "Evil Dead." That'll be coming too, soon.
  • Sparkle Motion!
  • "Sometimes, I doubt your commitment to Sparkle Motion."
  • "How did you feel being denied these Hungry, Hungry Hippos?"
  • "Hey, have you guys seen Frank?" "Frank was here. Went to get beer" (but they have a keg!)
  • Oh, it's Seth Rogan who (kinda) kills Gretchen. (He throws her near the street where she's later hit by Frank's car.)
  • Bye, Frank.
  • Here comes the engine, back through time.
  • Bye Donnie.
  • It's a sad ending, but ... I like to think that Donnie made a decision, knowing that he had to be there, had to die to set reality back on the right path, and in the end, he was OK about it.

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