“S. Darko” is a 2009 sci-fi thriller Directed by Chris Fisher (the executive producer of “The Magicians” TV series). This film is the less known sequel to the 2001 cult classic “Donnie Darko." You may not have seen, but have very likely heard of “Donnie Darko”, which earned a gross revenue of $7.3 million with a $4.5 million budget. It is doubtful that you have heard of “S. Darko”, which surprisingly grossed $4.9 million with a $4 million budget.
The cast stars little known actors such as: Deveigh Chase (best known for playing Samara from “The Ring” and voicing Lilo in “Lilo & Stitch”), Briana Evigan (best known as the main character in the “Step Up” movies) and Ed Westwick (best known as Chuck Bass in the “Gossip Girl” TV series). Quite the star cast, right?
It took eight years for someone to follow up the cult following success film “Donnie Darko”, and it wasn’t even the same director (Richard Kelly), but the original writer (also Richard Kelly) helped create the characters. Despite the success of “Donnie Darko”, “S.Darko” has received many negative reviews, rating 4.5 stars lower than its predecessor (8.1 to 3.6).
Now to the plot. Don’t worry, no spoilers. It’s July, the year is 1995, Samantha Darko and her friend Corey are going on a road trip to Las Angeles. Sam’s brother (Donnie) has died in a horrible accident involving a mysterious airplane engine and her family is falling apart as a result; Corey is a rebellious party girl who just wants to get away and start fresh. On their way, their car breaks down and strands them in a tiny middle-of-nowhere town and Corey immediately begins to stir up trouble like she does. The events that follow are a crazy array of meteor strikes, end-of-the-world predictions by a Desert Storm veteran, Sam’s hallucinatory sleepwalking and time travel mayhem. A mysterious figure reveals that it is up to Sam and her friends to prevent the end of the world.
Personally, I love “Donnie Darko” a lot and, as a fan, I feel that “S. Darko” is a worthy sequel. It has gotten a lot of hate over the years, but it had quite the order to fill and it managed to succeed quite well, even with a different director.
In short, watch this movie. You don’t even need to have seen “Donnie Darko” to enjoy this film, but if you do enjoy it, don’t be afraid to watch the first film as well. I sure hope you enjoyed this review and I hope even more that you enjoy this movie.