Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Finally Saw Donnie Darko

its been on the list for a while. finally saw it. awesome flick.

there are many, many lessons one can take from that movie. first off, i clearly don't understand about 60% of that movie. it would probably require viewing 6-7 times to even begin approaching 90% comprehension, but i'll see if i can't extrapolate some wisdom now. one of the aspects i liked about the movie, and about donnie (jake gyllenhaal) especially, is that he was never afraid to question anything. he saw truth not through convention but conflict and always searching for the right answer, even if there isn't necessarily one. he wasn't afraid to challenge authority, even to his detriment. no one was going to deny donnie the truth as he saw it, and i admire that. granted, he was nutso, but still...there is a fine line between genius and insane; i'm still not sure exactly what side of the line donnie was on.

i also found his relationship with gretchen (jena malone) very interesting. donnie and gretchen had one of those "only-in-the-movies" relationships where two lost souls find each other and the world seems right. it reminded me of some other movie relationship that i can't remember (it's really bothering me that i can't remember what movie i am trying to think of. the relationship had almost the exact same dynamic as the donnie-gretchen relationship and it's really, really bothering me that i can't think of the movie. i know it exists and that i'm not making it up...or am i?? I JUST REMEMBERED: they reminded me of the relationship between the daughter and the neighbor in "american beauty"). ANYWAY, they had a rare relationship, one that only exists on screen, yet speaks to the human condition in such a meaningful and profound way that it makes you wish and yearn to have that kind of connection in your own life.

i also found the mother a very interesting character. she was strong and knowledgeable, yet still was not able to fully connect with her children or communicate very effectively. she, in a weird way, might be the most complex character in the movie: strong, knowledgeable, loving, and caring, but at the same time aloof, detached, and because of her certain philosophy of allowing her children to decide their own destiny, not able to fully be there for them.

verdict: donnie darko is a great movie. existential in the vein of the aforementioned american beauty, eternal sunshine of the spotless mind, and (gag) say anything (for my thoughts on say anything please see chapter 1 of "sex, drugs, and cocoa puffs" by chuck klosterman or for the cliffs notes version check out this washington post article).

two more observations: 1) the movie needed more maggie gyllenhaal. most movies need more maggie gyllenhaal. 2) i don't know if i am reading too much into this, but i found it very reminiscent of ET when donnie would put on his hoodie and ride his bike. that could have significance or it could just be a coincidence. if it does have something to do with ET symbolically it might take the movie to a whole new level, especially considering drew barrymore was in both.

what does everyone else think about donnie darko or any of the other multitude of subjects i threw out there?

No comments: