S. Darko

by Aron Gold, Esq.

EDGE Media Network Contributor

Thursday May 28, 2009

S. Darko

How can you follow up the cult classic "Donnie Darko"? Its masterful blend of Jake Gyllenhall, religion, science, web-based content, cult status, and again Jake Gyllenhall made it the classic film many know, love and worship.

A tall order was placed when S. Darko was put into production. Does this straight-to-DVD release live up to its predecessor?

Of course not, and the expectation should not be set so high. Daveigh Chase returns as Donnie's younger sister Samantha, who is 7 years older and mentally disturbed by the unexplained death of her brother.

Her parents split up, her older sister wants nothing to do with her, so Samantha has taken to being a free spirit, drug-taking teen.

The movie starts with her and her best friend on their way to Los Angeles to become strippers, but end up in a small town in the desert due to car problems. The same strange oddities from the first film are haunting this small town as they were back in Middlesex.

If you smartly followed the fictional "Philosophy of Time Travel" from the first film's website or from the director's cut, you'll be able to understand completely what's happening in the lives of all the townsfolk and Samantha herself.

No, you won't be flung off to a tangent universe by watching "S. Darko". It's a complete tale in the vein of "Donnie Darko" and, as a stand alone following the same philosophy, it fares pretty well. Will it shock you with the brilliance that Donnie left viewers with? No. But you should know what to expect.

Along the same vein, the BluRay and DVD contain a few special features that explain the film including Commentary with the Filmmakers, deleted Scenes, a Making of featurette, and a silly song called "Utah Too Much" from the crew.

All in all, for fans of the original, "S. Darko" may is a nice continuation of its philosophy.

Aron is a contributor to Edge, focusing on critiques and local events. He is an attorney in Philadelphia.