Donnie Darko

I’ve watched this movie about 7 times now and I’m only just understanding it. People don’t like this movie because its confusing and weird. Others love it because its confusing and weird. You do have to watch it more than once to even get a small grasp on the whole thing but in a good way. You WANT to understand it and figure it all out. Well, I did anyways.

This movie is about poor little Donnie Darko who has ‘emotional problems’ and his BFF Frank, the 6ft tall bunny rabbit. Sounds like Harvey but its no where near as comical and we actually see the bunny though we kind of wish we didn’t!

This review probably won’t make any sense because the film makes little sense so blame the film if you read this and you’re going “er… what?”

  • The first shot is of a boy, laying on the ground in the middle of a road on what looks like the side of a mountain, his bike on one side next to him. We have questions from the word go with this film. Forever asking questions. Why is he on the floor? Why is he in his pajamas? Is he Donnie Darko? How did he get there? Why is he so happy? Has he escaped death? WHAT’S HAPPENING?! That last question is pretty much repeated for the whole movie.
  • It is Donnie Darko. And its Jake Gyllenhaal. Its very yummy Jake Gyllenhaal.
  • The soundtrack is a mixture of 80s classics and scary music, completely perfect for this movie. The scary, instrumental music shows us the underlying tone of a scene that we wouldn’t realise was sinister.
  • This whole movie is about time. Everything is about time. Even the fabulous, amazing editing is about time. Fast motion. Slow motion. Interlacing scenes. Its just fantastic. I actually wrote about the editing for film studies A Level. If you’re interested in what I wrote, continue reading. If not, skip this paragraph and move to the next bullet point:
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    The Graduate

    I can’t really see why this movie is so great… it could have been made a lot better but oh well. Its good, but I’ve seen a lot better. The plot is a graduate who has an affair with Mrs. Robinson and ends up falling in love with Mrs. Robinson’s daughter.

  • I like the way it was shot, I like the dimensions. I don’t know whether its just my computer or it was all that they could afford or something but its so long but not very high. It looks almost artistic.
  • He’s graduated and his parents have this party for him but its filled with their friends and family friends who just fuss over the poor young man. I totally felt for him then.
  • I recognized the classic shot of Mrs. Robinson’s leg and Dustin Hoffman in the background with the classic line “Mrs. Robinson, you’re trying to seduce me.” However, they used the word ‘seduce’ too often that it lost its ‘meaning’ if you know what I mean.
  • The tan lines on Mrs. Robinson’s body were funny, but also a nice change as you normally never see tan lines on women in movies. It was quite clever how they angled the camera to be over Mrs. Robinson’s shoulder so we see Hoffman, but we get very quick cuts to show areas of her naked body. That actually made it more tasteful than movies these days that would go ahead and show it all.
  • It was interesting to see another side to affairs. Most of the time in movies, the affairs are done so gracefully but in this one, at least at the beginning of the affair, Hoffman’s character hasn’t a single clue what to do which seems realistic.
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    Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid

    I really liked this movie! The plot line is relatively easy to follow and its almost border lining into a comedy, rather than a typical Western. Its about these two guys that are on the run from the law, basically.

  • I’m a little confused about what the sepia tone of the beginning, middle and end scenes represent. I thought, at first, that they were the parts that they know where fact and the rest is what is rumored to of happened and that sepia was used to show it as ‘old footage’ showing that its ‘real’. However, as the movie went on, I don’t think that’s the case. I think that maybe its just to remind the audience that this is history they’re talking about. However, it does say at the beginning “Most of what follows is true.”
  • I only have one bad thing to say about the fantastic casting of Robert Redford and Paul Newman; they don’t look old enough to be ‘over-the-hill’ robbers. But aside from that, they’re brilliant together, there’s so much chemistry, they just ooze with ‘best-friend-forever-ness’. However, I am confused because they discover stuff about each other as they run from the law. I don’t know whether they’ve just met and they just happen to really get along or if the script is supposed to show us that even BFFs don’t know everything about each other.
  • The comedy is my kind of comedy. Its not laugh-out-loud funny but it makes you smile. Redford and Newman have great comic timing and style, they just bounce off one another with teasing and jokes that BFFs do say to each other. Don’t wish to go on about this but it does really make me miss my friends back in England.
  • Their relationship with the woman is weird… almost like they’re having a threesome but without the BFFs getting together; they just take it in turns to ‘be’ with her. Weird…
  • It was interesting to see the bicycle make a little appearance in a Western. It oddly works as a little sidekick to the horse.
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