Donnie Darko Essay

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Donnie Darko Context Statement Donnie Darko was released in September 2001 (shortly after the 9/11 bombings of the World Trade Centre.) As the film involved a jet engine falling from the sky, it is possible that this affected the success of the film, in cinemas in America. However, when it went to DVD release, it became a cult classic, particularly in the United Kingdom. It is difficult to pigeon hole this movie by genre: the writer-director Richard Kelly shifts between comedy, melodrama, science fiction and horror, sometimes all within the same scene. The plot is detailed and involves many issues. The film contains so many issues, particularly involved with young people and this, as well as the gruesome and “off’ humour attracted me to the film when it was re-released a few years ago. The plot follows a month in the life of Donnie Darko, a high school student in Virginia, USA, in the year 1988. Parts of this story are typical 1980s teen movie, for example, Donnie is picked on at school; he fights with his sisters at the dinner table; and he falls in love with and loses his virginity to the new girl in his English class. However, the plot becomes very, very confusing, and it is almost necessary to visit the website,, or The website helps clarify the text “The Philosophy of Time Travel”, which is now included in the DVD. The main part of the film depicts Donnie going through a “tangent universe”, created for him by a “higher power”, where he is allowed to become aware of events that would occur were he to continue living in the primary / normal universe. Donnie is basically presented with a choice: go on living and the universe would be full of misery, pain and destruction. Die and life would be better for everyone else. This is why Donnie repeats the line, “I promise one day, everything will be better for
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