It’s the run up to the 1988 presidential election in the States and troubled teenager, Donnie (Jake Gyllenhaal) is plagued by visions of a giant evil rabbit predicting the end of the world. As Donnie tries to discover the laws that influence the future and why he escaped a fatal accident, he is led by the rabbit to both destroy and create.
Richard Kelly, first-time writer and director, has created a film that intrigues from the start. An instant cult classic, there are so many possible meanings and explanations of the twisting plot that it appeals to the puzzle-solver in us. Kelly masterfully creates disturbing undercurrents from the materials of real life and while the end is provocative for some rather than satisfying, the development of plot and character is fascinating. Jake Gyllenhaal strikes just the right note of depressed and quirky but likeable teenager.
The director’s cut gives us an extra twenty minutes that build the alternative reality aspect of the film, but still hold onto the time-travel possibilities.
This is a film where maybe it’s the journey rather than the destination that pleases.
‘A great pleasure to revisit Richard Kelly’s intelligent, compassionate movie.’ Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian
The ‘kind of movie that calls out not merely to be experienced but to be solved.’ Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
‘We leave the cinema feeling that we have been in the company of a highly interesting new talent.‘ Philip French, The Observer
‘Replete with unsettling atmosphere, dark laughs and intriguing, likeable characters.’ Nev Pierce, BBC Films Review