Donnie Darko

So I watched this movie for the first time today, and I have some questions.  I’m putting an LJ cut in here because you shouldn’t read my thoughts if you haven’t seen the movie;  I’m sure to spoil something.

First off, I get the whole him not dying by the plane engine created this parallel or “tangent” universe. And everything is trying to get Donnie to make things right again, mainly through “the living dead,” Frank and Gretchen. And that by him going back to the real universe and dying saves the lives of Frank, Gretchen, and Donnie’s mother and sister and life returns to normal for the “manipulated living.” I get that.

But why the hell did Frank the Rabbit bring him out of bed in the first place? Why did the alternate universe need to be created at all? Frank’s purpose is to get Donnie to destroy the tangent universe, but Frank’s responsible for the tangent universe being created in the first place. And why does Donnie see the rabbit before the tangent universe is created?  Have I missed something?

And also, what’s with the shrink? Donnie’s last session with her totally confused me. Does she know what’s really happening? Why had she been giving him placebos this whole time when he’s had previous episodes with mental illness? And why does she just let him go?

7 thoughts on “Donnie Darko

  1. this is what i hate the most about the movie. i mean, i get the movie. but there's no explanation as to why it had to happen in the first place. that's the major problem inherent in the script. the question of "why" is not answered. it seems like it was just trying to dabble with the chaos theory and be cool in that way — but it wasn't well thought out. maybe it made sense when they were high, but not so much sober.
    so no, i don't think you missed anything. and anyone who says that the film has meaning so deep its impossible to understand — yeah, they're just arrogant pretentious pricks who think they're above everyone else by claiming that they can think deep enough to get something from nothing.
    it's stupid. and it maddens me. once again — yes, i get the movie. i understand everything. but the huge-ass hole left behind is the question "WHY"??? no answer.

  2. I enjoyed Donnie Darko a lot, but it's the kind of movie you just have to take at face value and not think too hard about. Once you think about the plot, it all falls apart. Just enjoy the neat atmosphere of it.

  3. Donnie seems to have had quite a stunted life up until the tangential universe is created. He's unhappy, he's seeing a shrink, he's a loner … his death is necessary to save the lives of others but I like to think that, since he's dying for the greater good, the universe is giving him a chance to have some choice in his death by creating this tangent universe. He gets to speak out in school, fall in love, expose a child molester, and choose to give his life. When he wakes up in bed, he could leave but he doesn't, he just realizes what is about to happen, laughs, and goes back to sleep.
    The only thing that really pissed me off about Donnie Darko was all I could think was, "So, Patrick Swayze gets to keep consuming child porn?" but, I went to the website and found he was evenutally arrested anyway.
    Go to the website. It won't explain a lot but it's fun to navigate through.

    • Okay, thinking about it like makes it a little better. It has a little more of a point.
      And yeah I was wondering about the child porn thing too, good to see he still gets caught. I did check out the site, it's…interesting. 🙂 A little confusing at first.

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