I had never seen it before and knew nothing about it except that there was a big rabbit named Frank. I was completely unprepared for the effect this tragic story would have on me. I'll definitely watch this one again.
Salon says, "“Donnie Darko” is a stunning technical accomplishment that virtually bursts with noise, ideas and references, but it’s fundamentally a gracefully crafted movie that’s about human beings and not images." Slant Magazine closes by saying, "Donnie Darko is a blazingly original evocation of better-place-than-here hopefulness, an affront to '80s naivete that is mindful of strange events that seemingly happen for a reason though not always for the better good." Moria gives it 2 stars and finds it confusing. Empire Online calls it "a mini-masterpiece". LocusMag.com says,
Despite the flaws, the portions that do work are fiercely ambitious, nearly perfect and deeply compelling. As King Crimson once put it, "The more I look at it, the more I like it." Kelly may have missed the final pitch, but he went down swinging for the fences. Nor am I alone in my esteem. Donnie Darko seems to have become that rarest of creatures, a cult film entirely free of camp.Roger Ebert has a mixed review. Rotten Tomatoes has a critics score of 85%.