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Donnie Darko is an award-winning horror movie from the director of 127 Hours. The story begins when Donnie sleepwalks out of his house one night. While asleep, he sees a giant rabbit, and returns home only to find that his bedroom has been crashed by a jet engine. Now, he must decide whether this is the result of a parallel universe, or a symptom of mental illness.
The movie is filled with many theories about time travel, including the one proposed by Grandma Death. It's not entirely clear if this is a real or a fictional story, but it's a fascinating insight into the mind of a child who tries to make sense of the world. The movie's ending satires the idea that free will doesn't exist, and explores the effects of such thinking.
The plot of Donnie Darko consists of three distinct sequences: Donnie's awakening, Donnie's crimes, and his sacrifice on Halloween night. The first sequence introduces Donnie, who is prone to bouts of depression and late-night sleepwalking sessions. The second sequence focuses on Donnie's love life, which follows the first. As Donnie becomes increasingly obsessed with his love life, he realizes that the world is ending and only he can prevent it.
The second half of Donnie Darko is a thriller that centers on the fates of two people in a world under a series of mysterious circumstances. Gretchen's mom is murdered by the Manipulated Dead, which deepens Donnie's relationship with her. Gretchen's mom also gets murdered by a serial killer, which further complicates the plot. But even if this isn't enough to keep Gretchen alive, her love life isn't complete without a killer.
A final twist in the plot involves an alternative reality. As Donnie awakes one morning, his world shifts and he lives in a parallel universe. This alternate reality exists only for a 28-day period. It is a replica of the Primary Universe, and will eventually collapse. Donnie must save the universe to save it. A recurring theme throughout the film is that life is not what it seems. But this is all part of the plot of Donnie Darko.
Donnie Darko is a cerebral film that requires time to mature. If you're a young person, watching Donnie Darko is a rite of passage, right up there with discovering rappers like Odd Future. It is also a vessel for teenage anxiety. The generation born after the Great Recession has a higher rate of anxiety than their predecessors, and this is especially true of Gen Z and millennials who were born into the promise of social mobility and the American dream. By identifying with Donnie Darko and the underlying messages, you can graft your own feelings onto his or hers.
As Donnie and Gretchen visit Roberta Sparrow's house one Friday night, they realize that the house is haunted and that she is dead. After the incident, Donnie is inspired to write to Roberta Sparrow. Meanwhile, in a classroom, Karen Pomeroy teaches Donnie and his classmates to stop studying The Destructors and read Graham Greene's book, Watership Down. The professor's book, Watership Down, is also a classic. The students, however, are unprepared for this new adventure.
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