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Donnie Darko - Director's Cut (1 Disc) [2001] [DVD]

4.4 out of 5 stars 430 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Jake Gyllenhaal, Jena Malone, Drew Barrymore, Mary McDonnell, Katharine Ross
  • Directors: Richard Kelly
  • Producers: Sean McKittrick, Nancy Juvonen, Adam Fields
  • Format: PAL
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: In2film
  • DVD Release Date: 9 Oct. 2006
  • Run Time: 134 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (430 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000IB0K74
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 91,804 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

A director's cut of the directorial debut of Richard Kelly, which is a comic mixture of 80s sci-fi, horror and teen movie genres. October 1988 and small-town USA is about to witness the end of the world. Well, that's according to Frank, a giant, talking rabbit that only Donnie Darko (Jake Gyllenhaal), a brilliant but troubled teenager, can see. Frank has been urging Donnie to play dangerous pranks on his friends and dysfunctional family, but when he gets Donnie to leave his bedroom one night and tells him the world will end soon, strange things begin to happen - starting with the engine of an aeroplane plunging to ground and hitting Donnie's, now empty, bedroom.

From Amazon.co.uk

Donnie Darko is a thought-provoking, touching and distinctive offering from relative newcomer, Richard Kelly (II). It's 1988 in small-town America and Donnie, a disturbed teenager on medication and undergoing psychoanalysis for his blackouts and personality disorders, is being visited by a being in a rabbit suit whom he calls Frank. It's this anti-Harvey that saves Donnie from being crushed to death when an airplane engine falls from the sky onto his house. This is the beginning of their escalating relationship, which, as Donnie follows Frank's instructions, becomes increasingly violent and destructive. Added to this is Frank's warning of the impending apocalypse and Donnie's realisation that he can manipulate time, leading to a startling denouement where nearly everything becomes clear.

"Nearly everything", because Donnie Darko is a darkly comic, surreal journey in which themes of space, time and morality are interwoven with a classic coming-of-age story of a teenage boy's struggle to understand the world around him. The film leaves the viewer with more questions than it answers, but then that's part of its charm. Performances are superb: Jake Gyllenhaal underplays the mixed-up kid role superbly and Donnie's episodes of angst positively erupt out of the screen. There are also some starry cameos from Mary McDonnell as Donnie's long-suffering mother, Patrick Swayze as Jim Cunningham, the personal-development guru with a terrible secret, and Noah Wyle and Drew Barrymore as Donnie's progressive teachers. Undoubtedly too abstruse for some tastes, Donnie Darko's balance of outstanding performances with intelligent dialogue and a highly inventive story will reward those looking for something more highbrow than the average teenage romp. --Kristen Bowditch --This text refers to an alternate DVD edition.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
A brilliantly bizzare film that will leave you in a state of shock while you try to get your head around what just happened. It will challenge your perceptions of your own reality and provide a talking point aswell. The appearance of Frank, a six foot tall time travelling talking rabbit who foretells the end of the world within five minutes of the start sets the tone and is followed up without dissapointment.
With many surreal moments, being set in the 80s it can only be expected, and a complimentary soundtrack the film can be enjoyed by many people on different levels whether for the nostalgia, weirdness, relationships or complicated theories of space/time travel and mental health.
Not a film for the lowest common denominator but one which is definately worth an investigation.
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Format: DVD
Donnie Darko is a very difficult movie to characterise and assign to one or even two genres, which is also part of its appeal and fascination. It opens with the title character (Jake Gyllenhall) waking in his pyjamas, with his bike lying next to him, on a highway overlooking his hometown of Middlesex, set in an idyllic tree covered valley. Straightening up he looks out toward the rising sun on the horizon and with a knowing smile he re-mounts his bicycle and makes his way back home to the tune of Echo and The Bunnymen's 'The Killing Moon' in what is an excellent opening sequence. Right from these first few frames it was obvious that I was about to witness something very original and it had me hooked.
Donnie Darko is inspired (I would guess) by the weird combination of Philip K Dick, Wes Anderson, JD Salinger and the classic James Stewart movie 'Harvey'. It announces the arrival of two great new talents in Writer/Director Richard Kelly and the young actor Jake Gyllenhall, in what is a hugely original, ingenious and entertaining movie. Set in 1988, around Halloween time, this movie has the conventional leafy-suburbia-plus-high-school setting, which alludes to the horror genre of Carrie and Halloween but it is no horror movie. It also has specific elements that suggest that it's a psychodrama about a young man with schizophrenia but this is not 'A Beautiful Mind'. It also ponders the possibility of time travel but this is not science fiction. Stranger still, Donnie Darko is unusual in that (unlike most retro 1980's pictures such as The Wedding Singer) it actually has a very cool soundtrack drawn from the period of my youth, which includes contributions from the likes of Echo and The Bunnymen, Tears For Fears and Joy Division.
So, what is Donnie Darko about?
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Format: DVD
An extraordinary movie about love, death, madness, time travel and being a teenager, Donnie Darko is one of the most brilliant films to come out of Hollywood in recent years, and is all the more remarkable given the fact that it was made by a first-time director still in his twenties. The film follows the troubled teenaged Donnie and the increasingly bizarre events that seem to be centred on him. One of the central threads of the film is Donnie's series of encounters with a giant bunny rabbit called Frank who, the first time Donnie meets him, tells him that the world is going to end in 28 days, 6 hours, 42 minutes and 12 seconds. Due to the massive cult popularity the film attained, Kelly was invited to release his Director's Cut of the movie. In my view, the Director's Cut is definitely superior, with extra scenes that round out the story and some atmospheric visual effects they didn't have the money to do the first time round, but Kelly has emphasised that he sees the two cuts as being different versions of the film, rather than the Director's Cut being the definitive one. The Theatrical Cut presents the story in a more ambiguous way, with the Director's Cut presenting more clearly Kelly's own interpretation of the story (which has lead some fans to prefer the Theatrical Cut.) Apart from the different versions of the film, the only differences between the two DVDs are that the Director's Cut contains a few more extras and a new commentary with Kelly and his friend Kevin Smith. This film is a stunning achievement and is really worth getting slightly obsessed by...
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Format: Blu-ray
I already owned the theatrical and director's cuts on seperate dvds but being such a fan of the film I decided to splash out on the blu-ray. Both cuts are included here on two seperate discs and all the extras from both previous dvd releases are included here but there are no blu-ray exclusives. The original has the standard 2.0 stereo track, and the sound isn't particularly great. The audio certainly isn't a massive improvement over the original dvd release. The picture is also the most disappointing that I have seen on blu-ray. Now I know that the film was made with a small budget and it was filmed using cheap film stock so the film is never going to look pristine no matter what format it is on, but this really doesn't look much better than the dvd release. In fact at times the film looks downright terrible on blu-ray. Edges blur and colours are way over-saturated. This gives it the look of an 80's tv movie which may have been Richard Kelly's original intention, but it makes it less than desirable on blu-ray.
To summise, Donnie Darko is a wonderful and haunting movie in every resepct. The blu-ray however is certainly not worth the upgrade. Hold onto your original dvd copy until the inevitable Ultimate Edition arrives on blu-ray, hopefully with a little tweaking from the director.
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