Mihael’s review published on Letterboxd:
Donnie Darko "is an amazing film that is very difficult to rate. It is incredibly strange, watchable, but also confusing and open to many interpretations. My advice is just to watch this film and see what your opinion is.
The strangeness of this film does not surprise me so much since it stars Jake Gyllenhaal, an actor who seems to like to take risks with such strange films that have a deeper meaning and that touch your thoughts, but also provoke. Think about it, this actor has made not just one weird movie, but many, such as "Source Code", "Nightcrawler", "Brokeback Mountain", "Love and Other Drugs" as well as "Accidental Love", all very unusual and difficult to categorize films. He definitely takes risks and I really appreciate that and that’s why I’m looking for his films.
DONNIE DARKO is a film that is difficult to classify. Some might pass it off as a routine teen movie, but they would be wrong. It has all the pitfalls of adolescent movies, from talking about teenagers delving deep into themselves to problems with parents and the abundance of intrigue and smoldering violence in a local high school, but it goes much further than that.
This is one of those movies with a plot that doesn’t make too much sense to the end, where a few turns or three make what was previously crystal clear. That's a good trick, which you won't get bored of. Add to that an 80s setting and an abundance of cool Tears for Fears music (which was almost created for this film) and you’ll get an emotional thriller with heart and brain. You may be scratching your head, but re-examinations should address this.
Frank is just weird, and Jake Gyllenhaal plays it off with a disturbing and very realistic performance. Gyllenhaal is a great lead role and brings tremendous depth to the film, his relaxed approach mixed with dark haunted glances to which he can draw contributes to feelings of threat and reality. The rest of the cast is great.
There’s a crazy sci-fi element. All this is mixed in one of the most unique blends that this film offers.
"Donnie Darko" is one of the strangest cult films ever. Richard Kelly follows the same school of David Lynch, making a very intriguing film with the usual elements of this director, such as “The Lost Highway,” using very bizarre and dark characters. The story is confusing and quite intricate, but it holds attention to the very end, with a great cast and performance.
My Rating is 7/10.