Dec 18, 2023

Donnie Darko

A Film by Richard Kelly

New Books Network 2023

If we had seen Donnie Darko in high school, we would been drawn to the Easter eggs throughout the film and made videos in which we pointed them out with big red arrows. But there’s more to this tale of time travel than a dorm-room discussion of free will vs. determinism: we now appreciate the ways in which Richard Kelly dramatizes teenage dread and the fear of one’s insignificance. Being a teenager often involves thinking that one’s personal dramas are like the end of the world—but what if they were? Join Mike and Dan for a conversation about a film that feels as if Philip K. Dick adapted The Catcher in the Rye for the screen. It’s one of the best films about high school in America and one of three that features a large rabbit.

“Signs and Symbols,” the terrific story by Vladimir Nabokov that comes up in the episode, can be found in this collection.

Follow us on X or Letterboxd. Incredible bumper music by John Deley.

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