Karen Valby
March 22, 2002 AT 05:00 AM EST

Donnie Darko

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
mpaa
R
runtime
122 minutes
Limited Release Date
10/26/01
performer
Jake Gyllenhaal, Drew Barrymore, Daveigh Chase, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Mary McDonnell, Holmes Osborne, Patrick Swayze, Noah Wyle
director
Richard Kelly
distributor
Newmarket Capital Group
author
Richard Kelly
genre
Drama, Sci-fi and Fantasy

We gave it an A-

”Donnie Darko…what the hell kind of name is that? It’s like some kind of superhero or something.” ”What makes you think I’m not?” teases the high school star of Donnie Darko, Richard Kelly’s directorial debut. Played beautifully by the charismatic Gyllenhaal, Donnie is a paranoid schizophrenic who dreads the messages of doom delivered by a giant rabbit. What sounds silly is actually a dark and lovely route into a tortured mind, until a time-travel plot twist suggests the bunny knows better than the boy’s therapist. Part schizophrenic reality, part comic-book fantasy, Kelly’s swirly vision gets the full support of an excellent cast (including Jena Malone and Mary McDonnell) that circles his young hero with love and fear.

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