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Donnie Darko (2001) Review

Have you ever thought of a fictional being standing or sitting beside you that you can talk to about your problems?

Donnie Darko is an underrated science-fiction psychological thriller film about a young, emotionally unstable teenager getting persuaded by an imaginary rabbit figure to do things.

Plot Overview

The movie follows Donnie Darko, a young but troubled teenager who sleepwalks outside his home and is led by a mysterious voice. He meets a mysterious rabbit figure who tells him the world will end in 28 days. He wakes up midway through a golf course and heads home immediately. He is shocked when he discovers a jet engine crashed into his bedroom and thinks the mysterious figure saved him from danger.

Donnie Darko lives with his parents and older sister, Elizabeth. Over the next few days, he has visions of Frank, the rabbit figure. His parents decide to send him to a psychotherapist named Dr. Thurman. His diagnosis is that Donnie suffers from daylight hallucinations, and Frank is a figment of his imagination. Frank asks Donnie if he knows about time travel, which leads him to ask his science teacher, Dr. Monnitoff. He gives him a book about time travel written by Roberta Sparrow, a former science teacher and now an older woman living outside town. Her nickname, Grandma Death, popularly knows her. Donnie also starts seeing Gretchen Ross, who has recently moved to the city and adopted a new identity after escaping her violent and abusive father.

Frank grows increasingly influential with Donnie's sleepwalking episodes. He orders him to do things in his school, and his warnings of the world's impending end are starting to creep up.


Donnie Darko brought in the incredible talents of Jake Gyllenhaal and his sister, Maggie Gyllenhaal. Both actors surprisingly played as brothers and sisters.

Donnie Darko is a pretty interesting film packed with a lot of twists and unexpected moments, especially as the story progresses. I find it very weird because everything about this is mind-boggling. It will let you think at first that this is like a possession story or a tale of a person plagued by his emotional mind, but it turns into a science-fiction flick out of nowhere. The ending may be too puzzling for casual movie watchers, but it's pretty okay for a film that messed up my mind.

It is a hit-or-miss movie, and you either love or hate it. Donnie Darko should be on your list if you are looking for a non-typical film. It's a perfect Sunday evening movie especially if you like mystery, science fiction with a little bit of drama.

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