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Thread: Donnie Darko

  1. #1
    Junior Member kinghouse's Avatar
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    Default Donnie Darko

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    the movie "Donnie Darko" is one of my favorite. I also have to note DONNIE DARKO is underrated. i just watched it the other day (i know it is kind of old) but i had a problem understanding some of the events happening in the plot.

    what was the significance of "the end of the world"? there was no 'end of the world' - just a timewarp. & was "FRANK" real or fake? he showed up in flesh some scenes but he also showed up as an hallucination. if someone could simply explain the ending i would have no trouble understanding it. normally i do not have trouble understanding movies - (i understood every sci-fi movie the first time i watched it ((including matrix)).

    2 scenes had songs that i loved. one scene is where donnie walked in the school (in the first 20 min of the film) and it shows other students walking through the hall a man's voice was singing - sometimes going kind of high - I would love to know the artist & title.

    The other scene is during the ending..i only have 2 LYRICS!! "...mad world..." sounds like R.E.M. soRRy. Thank you SO MUCH ADTUNES for your help.

  2. #2
    Junior Member Natephish's Avatar
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    Originally posted by kinghouse@Jun 26 2004, 05:34 PM
    what was the significance of "the end of the world"?* there was no 'end of the world' - just a timewarp.* & was "FRANK" real or fake?* he showed up in flesh some scenes but he also showed up as an hallucination.* if someone could simply explain the ending i would have no trouble understanding it.* normally i do not have trouble understanding movies - (i understood every sci-fi movie the first time i watched it ((including matrix)).

    *SPOILERS! -- DON'T READ UNTIL AFTER YOU'VE SEEN THE MOVIE!*



    The thing about Donnie Darko is that every single thing relies on all of the others to help things fit into place. Even the smallest thing or person could end up potentially changing the entire future of the world.

    The end of the world was literally the end of a world. When the plane engine fell, it began a tangent universe, which was going to end in 28 days. As for Frank, there's no real answer, just whatever you happen to believe. He could be interpreted as a hallucination that Donnie sees in the form of someone he's comfortable (his sister's boyfriend). I personally believe Frank was something more. Maybe someone or something from the future that was sent back to help Donnie save the world. Maybe something sent by God. There is no definite answer.

    He helped Donnie be getting him out of his room when the engine fell, by telling him to flood the school so he could meet Gretchen (who had to die for Donnie to die to end the alternate universe) and having him burn down Jim Cunningham's house so he's be caught with the child pornograohy so Rose (Donnie's mom) would have to go on the plane with Sparkle Motion to California.

    As for the exact ending, it's very complicated. There is no real answer, but if you'd like, I can give you my point. I'd rather you try to get an idea for yourself before I fill your head with my ideas. I suggest that you try watching the movie at least a couple more times before you have someone explain it to you. The movie will click, but it takes some time. I've been studying it since November of 2002, and there are still things that I ask myself about.

    Besides watching it, read The Philosophy of Time Travel, which was written for the movie. The text will really help you to understand how Donnie did what he did, and why he had to do it.

    If you have more questions, feel free to post them here. Good luck!

  3. #3
    Junior Member KayFizzy's Avatar
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    Again with the SPOILERS

    My interpretation is basically the same as above, but I watched the movie again on DVD with the commentary. The whole thing at the end: The actors were saying that they didn't think many people would get it, so they explained what was happening. The whole thing is that all these people that the scenes flash across remember peices of what happened in the tangent universe where Donnie didn't die. Like Frank remembers having his eye stabbed, and you see him touch it. You also see Jim Cunningham crying because he remembers himself having child pornography.

    As for the end of the world, my belief is that Donnie had to sacrifice himself so that the world would fall back into it's proper time stream. Since he didn't die in the beginning like he was destined to, that set off a chain of events that would untimately lead to the end of the world, which would conviently happen in 28 days, 6 hours, 42 minutes, and 12 seconds.

    And Frank, I do believe, is something left up to the viewer. We see him as a pooka (an invisible spirit), but then he takes physical form when Gretchen is killed. I really don't know what to believe as far as this goes, because there are so many interpretations that can be drawn from it. Like Natephish said, it could be anything, even a sign from God. It all depends on how each person views it.

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    Junior Member Natephish's Avatar
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    Originally posted by KayFizzy@Jun 28 2004, 12:10 PM
    As for the end of the world, my belief is that Donnie had to sacrifice himself so that the world would fall back into it's proper time stream. Since he didn't die in the beginning like he was destined to, that set off a chain of events that would untimately lead to the end of the world, which would conviently happen in 28 days, 6 hours, 42 minutes, and 12 seconds.
    ** SPOILERS, AGAIN **

    That's exactly right. When Donnie lived, that caused the creation of the Tangent Universe. To close it and save the real world, Donnie had to die. It was just his fate to be killed by the engine. Like I said, if you read The Philosophy of Time Travel then you will understand the ending much more, even though it seems you have a good grasp on it.

    What's so amazing about Donnie dying is what had to happen. Donnie's friends had to help him survive so that he would die so that they would survive. I love how everything falls into place like that.

  5. #5
    Junior Member bkST88r's Avatar
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    IMO: what made donnie darko amazing was that you have to figure it out for yourself...i refused to read spoilers, and it took me 3 times watching the movie to actually get the point of it (contrast to vanilla sky, which had an amazing storyline but kinda disappointing that they explain it plainly in the end...which i doubt i would ever have gotten completely on my own but still owuld have been fun)

    -bk

  6. #6
    Junior Member BrianRDM's Avatar
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    I just saw the directors cut. It shows a lot more scenes then in the original (obviously) some important, some useless, and some minor details that somehow give more character development.

    The chapters of the philosophy of time travel were shown in the film, but they mainly focused on just a few sentences, and the were quick shots, where you only focused on that one sentence and the rest would dissapear.

    But mainly, there were 2 scenes that really made the movie make a whole lot more sence.

    The scene where donnie sees frank while under his therapists hypnosis is extended. His doctor says something along the lines of

    "donnie, you can stop taking your pills, they were placebos, nothing but pills made of water"
    "thank you"
    "donnie, you are not atheist. Atheist believe that there is no god, you are agnostic, you cant find an explination or proof of existance, but you do not stop believeing his existence" (refering to his earlier comment that it is useless to seek god if every living creature dies alone)

    That was the quote, cant say i remembered it word for word but it was along those lines.

    The second scene that was not shown was donnies english teacher (drew) telling her entire class that "The Destructors" was now banned form the school, and all who were caught with the book on school property would be suspended. She introduced another book of which i do not recall the name. But it had to do with a community of bunnie rabbits, and after 1 saw a vision and told his surrounding peers, none believed him. Long story short the bunnie who saw the vision died. Donnie would then argue with his teacher about the significance of the story.

    "who cares about a bunch of bunnie rabbits"
    "(teacher) The rabbits are us donnie. are you saying that the destruction of an entire race means nothing"
    "bunnies arent anything, they arent humans, they dont think or believe or have emotions, they dont have memories. bunnies are cute and horny, they have to live happy lives. I mean who wouldnt live a happy life having vast amounts of sex their whole lives"
    "(gretchen) thats not what he means. The writer loved his characters and with that his writing allows us to love them."
    "(back to donnie) but who cares about 1 insignificant life, even if not the entire species."

    once again, i didnt remember these lines exactly but i did remember the jist of them.

    After seeing directors cut, i have gained a new understanding of the film.

    It didnt have to do so much with the philosophy of travel, but it did explain how donnie did go back in time, as well as forward.

    I quote his therapist

    "if the sky were to open, and there were no rules, no laws, no boundires, all that would be left are you, and him"

    the doctor is speaking to donnie when he sees frank in her office. We also need to remember what donnie had said earlier

    "She said every living thing dies alone"
    "and how does that make you feel?"
    "afraid, i dont want to be alone"

    Frank appears, he tells donnie when they first 'meet' that hes been watching him. After watching the directors cut, ive come to the conclusion that Frank came to donnie from this tangent universe and gave him the choice, the choice that donnie really wasnt all that aware of. In exchange for frank to be with donnie, donnie would have to do these distructive acts which would in the end cause the deaths for the most part, of those he loved and cared about. For the others, the rest of humanity, and the collapse of this tangent universe ultimately leaving only him, and frank. Going back to the scene with donnie arguing the importance of the new book, he realizes that his one life was insignificant to be the reason for the deaths of the entire human race, and existence. He goes back in time and is killed by the jet engine, falling into the philosophy that every living creature dies alone.

    but then again thats just me

    also going with tthe philosophy of time travel says, the manupulated living being used by the manipulating dead. Frank was using the living to yes, lead donnie on in the directors cut he tells donnie to write her a letter, a letter that she would have in her hand and be on the road as frank runs over gretchen. After killing frank Roberta sperro then approaches donnie and tells him that he knows what he must do, and that he must hurry. That he must stop this manupulating dead before he destroys the universe, ending in only donnie and frank.

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