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Sep 9, 2010

30 dAyS oF cRaZy: Donnie Darko

You ready to have your mind blown? Four of Them's Simon is ready to do just that, all on the behalf of a movie that did the same damn thing to you. Double awesome.

Stay tuned throughout September for nuttiness and zaniness of all varieties - click here for the full lineup, and click here for prior entries (which won't do you much good today, what with this being the first - madness!).


Okay, I know this is a heavily devisive movie. But shut up, okay? Because, no matter what you have to say about it, you must admit: it's the first, and thus far only, of its kind. A psychological, dramatic time travel thriller about growing up, mental illness, and...other stuff. Involving evil bunnies. Or whatever.

So, right, this point has been made across the board, I believe. So I won't get into it anymore. Because I'm nice. But I will go on about a different interpretation: this is a superhero movie.

Not a men-in-tights-holy-Korean-prostitutes-Batman! superhero movie. It's a real superhero movie. Neither here (Spider Man) nor there (Nolan). A guy with superpowers--the eponymous Donnie (Jake Gyllenhaal)--who, instead of embraced by the public, is mistaken for insane, even by himself. He's assigned a sidekick, even. Frank the Bunny, whose secret identity is Donnie's sister's boyfriend, pops up when nobody will notice, dispensing instructions in the most obscure manner possible. Actually, come to think of it, he's more like M. Yeah. M.

Anyway. Confused about his powers, he acts out long before Frank shows up, burning down a house and ending up on once-a-week therapy. But with Frank to guide him, in one month he takes down a pedophile/cult leader, gets his fellow classmates out of school (truly a noble cause), and eventually the world (sure, negating the previous good deeds, but there's some implied justice on the site), all at his own expense. He even has a superhero name. That is mentioned in story. How meta.

Unfortunately, the world wasn't ready for his special brand of schitzophrenic justice. He went either unknown, discarded of, or ostracized, until his ultimate sacrifice, unheralded. His life written off as a freak accident from start to finish, a confused ne'er do'well with no ambition. This could very well have been the outcome of dozens of heroes before him, and surely after.

Tomorrow: Fitz goes on a long, strange trip with Steven Soderbergh's Solaris.


3 people have chosen wisely: on "30 dAyS oF cRaZy: Donnie Darko"

Castor said...

Love Donnie Darko, one of those movies that took me a couple viewings to "get it" lol. I guess I wasn't paying much attention the first time.

Who Is Afraid of Alfred Hitchcock? said...

Hello! Fletch,
This review was "brisk" with a touch of humour, and very interesting.
I have been told by many (film lovers) to seek this film out to watch and after reading this review...What am I waiting for?!?
Thanks, for sharing!
DeeDee ;-D

Liam [Less Than Three Film] said...

I love the "Donnie is a superhero" reading into this film! Truly one of the most fascinating, and it bypasses lots of the wibbley-wobbley timey-wimey stuff.

There's also a scene outside the school, where the giant dog statue has an axe embedded in it (just after Donnie floods the school). There's a character that can just be heard saying something like "that thing is made of brass isn't it?" or something along those lines. Would take super-hero strength to do that!