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Donnie Darko: The Director's Cut (Two-Disc Special Edition) (2005)

Jake Gyllenhaal , Jena Malone , Dee Austin Robertson , Richard Kelly  |  R |  DVD
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,218 customer reviews)

Price: $20.00 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Donnie Darko   -- $9.99
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  Two-Disc Special Edition $20.00  
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Product Details

  • Actors: Jake Gyllenhaal, Jena Malone, Mary McDonnell, Holmes Osborne, Maggie Gyllenhaal
  • Directors: Dee Austin Robertson, Richard Kelly
  • Writers: Dee Austin Robertson, Richard Kelly, Raymond Mansfield, Todd Berger
  • Producers: Aaron Ryder, Adam Fields
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Color, Director's Cut, Dolby, Dubbed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Dubbed: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Fox Searchlight
  • DVD Release Date: February 15, 2005
  • Run Time: 133 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,218 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0006GAOBI
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #60,650 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Donnie Darko: The Director's Cut (Two-Disc Special Edition)" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Production diary with optional commentary by director of photography Steven Poster
  • "They Made Me Do It Too: The Cult of Donnie Darko"
  • Storyboard-to-screen featurette
  • #I Fan: A Darkomentary
  • Director's cut theatrical trailer

Editorial Reviews

Additional Features

With an additional 20 minutes of material added to the original theatrical edition (including scenes not included in the augmented version previously released on DVD), Donnie Darko: The Director's Cut has a slower, more reflective pace than its first edit, and many more moments of emotional and tonal complexity. The film also has a fuller soundtrack (INXS' "Never Tear Us Apart" is featured prominently in writer-director Richard Kelly's mysterious opening) and new, startling special effects that underscore Donnie's ambiguous experience of time travel and cross-dimensional encounters with Frank, the 6-foot provocateur in a terrifying bunny costume. (Of course, new f/x or not, Donnie could still be a paranoid schizophrenic immersed in violent delusions.) Purists might find some of these changes to Kelly's 2001 cult hit about a troubled teen (Jake Gyllenhaal) trapped in alternative, apocalyptic destinies troubling. But overall the film is an even more haunting experience, impossible to shake.

An audio commentary track features a conversation between Kelly and Kevin Smith (Clerks) outlining the former's reasons for making a director's cut. Kelly says his intention was to amplify a science fiction and comic book element in Donnie Darko, re-design the sound (actually, Kelly claims, there never was a sound design for the original release), and purchase rights to various songs (including Joy Division's "Love Will Tear Us Apart") that were lost between the film's premiere at the Sundance Film Festival and the film's theatrical release. Kelly says he also wanted to give something new to the film's fans as thanks for their crucial, early support. Other features in this two-disc set include a highly entertaining production diary (including video of pre-production locations research) as well as a short film about the meaning of "Donnie Darko" as understood by some of the movie's British fans. --Tom Keogh

Product Description

During the presidential election of 1988, a teenager named Donnie Darko sleepwalks out of his house one night, and sees a giant, demonic-looking rabbit named Frank, who tells him the world will end in 28 days, 6 hours, 42 minutes, and 12 seconds. He returns home the next morning to find that a jet engine has crashed through his bedroom. As he tries to figure out why he survived and tries to deal with people in his town, like the school bully, his conservative health teacher, and a self-help guru, Frank continues to turn up in Donnie's mind, causing him to commit acts of vandalism and worse. The new Director?s Cut includes a production diary of the film (with optional commentary by Director of Photography Steven Poster), a story-board to screen featurette, the Director?s cut theatrical trailer, They Made Me Do It Too ? The Cult of Donnie Darko and the #1 Fan: A Darkomentary.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
326 of 367 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must-have DVD February 17, 2003
By pm444
Format:DVD
I missed this film in its theatrical release (apparently it received limited distribution), but since it requires at least two viewings, it's well-suited for DVD. It's difficult to describe the story or even characterize it by genre, which shows how original the film is. Simply put, it's about time travel, but it's about a lot more than that, too.
The acting is consistently outstanding, with a list of well-known names in the cast, along with less familiar ones. Jake Gyllenhaal gives an amazing performance that is so convincing, you forget that he is acting; he IS Donnie Darko. While the story is mainly told through his eyes, the other characters are surprisingly sympathetic as well. This is not an easy feat for a script to accomplish, especially when the viewer must focus so much attention on every event. It would have been easy to create a one-dimensional hero and a bunch of villains, but writer/director Richard Kelly doesn't take the easy way out.
Instead, we get a highly intelligent and challenging film that engages us as much as it baffles us, that injects enough humor to keep us from stress-overload, and most importantly, makes us want to watch it again and again, even after we know what's going on. In this sense, "Donnie Darko" succeeds where other films have fallen short: for example, I enjoyed the complexities of "Memento", but I was not able to identify or even care very much about any of the characters. The same was true of "The Usual Suspects". Both are excellent films, but I viewed both from a distance, more analytically than emotionally.
I did not view "Donnie Darko" from a distance. I was drawn into the world that it creates, and enjoyed it enough to return more than once.
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133 of 148 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Awesome Movie - Transfer to Blu-Ray Not So Good. December 1, 2009
By MGB
Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
First I would like to say that this review is more targeted at the Blu-Ray transfer of this movie. When I first found out this movie was available on Blu-Ray I had to have it since it's one of my favorite movies. I already owned the DVD, and was happy with the quality of the video on my up-converting DVD player. I figured the Blu-Ray would have to look better since it advertised as HD 1080p. Unfortunately that was not the case; in fact the DVD looks better up-converted than the Blu-Ray does. How does that happen? It appears the studio did very little to prepare this film for Blu-Ray. If anything they made it worse by trying to doctor it up rather than spend the money to re-master it properly. The movie has a lot of dark scenes which are almost all grainy and not very detailed. The light scenes are not as noticeable but you can still see it unless you're sitting a good distance from your TV. I guess the point I'm trying to make would be to hang on to your DVD until they fix the Blu-Ray transfer. At the new price it's worth buying if you don't already have the DVD, but don't "up grade" to this from your DVD.
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39 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The End of the World August 15, 2005
Format:DVD
Funny, sad, and mind-blowing, 'Donnie Darko' is, quite simply, an excellent movie. The plot is complex and engaging, with Jake Gyllenhaal as the protagonist, followed up by a cast that doesn't leave Jake holding up the movie.

Depending on what version of the film you see, the plot can be simple, or very hard to understand. I saw the original version on television and it was easy to comprehend. However, I had a lot of questions about little plot strings that weren't tied up. Just the other day I saw the director's cut. I spent the rest of the night explaining things to the people who watched it with me while simultaneously figuring it out myself.

But, let me explain first. In the original version of the movie the plot line goes like this. Donnie Darko is introduced as the protagonist. He smokes, sees a therapist, and is rude to his parents. Then comes the fateful night of October 2nd.

Donnie is asleep when he hears a voice that tells him to follow it. Donnie gets up and walks out of the house and onto a golf course where a human sized, demented bunny rabbit called Frank tells him the world will end in 28 days, 6 hours, 42 minutes, 12 seconds. At the same time as this encounter a jet engine falls through Donnie's room, which would have crushed him had he not gone out to the golf course. For the next 28 days Donnie goes on certain missions by the bidding of Frank, gets a girlfriend, and finds out about time travel. I wont tell the ending for the sake of preserving it.

In the director's cut there are a few differences. The beginning is the same. However, this time the end of the world mentioned by Frank really comes into play.
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361 of 418 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Remarkably original August 12, 2002
Format:DVD
Any form of media that makes you think has succeeded in what it set out to do.Donnie Darko is a film that succeeds on every conceivable level. The script is original and entirely unpredictable. There isn't a single bit of action or dialogue, not one frame that can be anticipated. The characters, too, are refreshingly well-conceived and highly unique. And it's a treat to see actors we know well (Drew Barrymore, who also produced, and Noah Wyle) stretch well beyond our usual expectations. There is great humor in this film as well as great sorrow. And, ultimately, it's impossible to say if the entire scenario takes place within the dreams of a brilliant but possibly schizophrenic young man or if, as he so desperately wishes, he has, through physics, managed to reverse time.
Jake Gyllenhaal gives a stunning performance as Donnie. Even his body language--incurving shoulders, questioning eyes, uncertain smiles--reveal a vast, searching intelligence. Mary McDonnell gives yet another in a roster of thoughtful portrayals--this time as the despairing mother of brilliant and troubled Donnie, simultaneously loving and hating him for being emotionally beyond her reach. And Jena Mallone is just wonderful, one of the truest, most authentic young actors around today.
This is filmmaking at its best--an adventure for the mind--not to be missed.
Most highly recommended.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars It's one of those movies that comes around from time ...
It's one of those movies that comes around from time to time that stays with you. I have watched it many times,
Published 5 days ago by Coach58
3.0 out of 5 stars 10th Anniversary just a repackage...nothing new here!
This package is fancy new artwork, but that's the extent of what's new in this edition.

It includes the exact same Blu-Ray disc as the standard Blu-Ray release, with... Read more
Published 18 days ago by KiWiSouP
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely a Wonderful Cult Film Starring Jake Gyllenhaal as Donnie...
An excellent movie that has become a cult classic.
Donnie Darko is a must see film. Over the years it has become a cult classic. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Robert Pylant
3.0 out of 5 stars I can see why it is a cult movie...
I got this because some one I was talking to said it was their favorite movie. I would not go that far. It is worth a watch. Read more
Published 1 month ago by WTR
5.0 out of 5 stars looks good
nice package, and wrap......good comments on the making of.....

I think I will like it better after I see it, though that funcky rabbit reminds me that hunting season is... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Magier
5.0 out of 5 stars Such a good movie
I love this Jake Gyllenhal classic. The music is great, the story is well-done, creative. albeit sad (and a little creepy).
Published 2 months ago by Cordobes
4.0 out of 5 stars Make shure
Be sure that is doesent come threw the royal mail if you live in the U S A other than that it is a great movie
Published 2 months ago by Johnna Hugus
5.0 out of 5 stars Oh, Frank!
The disk arrived in just about perfect condition, and the shipping time was good as well. This movie was downright wonderful. Read more
Published 2 months ago by NM
5.0 out of 5 stars The Empire 5 Star 500 - #157
Donnie Darko came out in 2001 & was written and directed by Richard Kelly.
This is a very unique and memorable film. Read more
Published 2 months ago by The Inquisitor
5.0 out of 5 stars Favorite Movie Ever
This movie is amazing. It is dark and disturbing and a totally crazy ride but it is also beautiful and mezmerizing. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Corey Webber
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