Plot: What’s it about?
For Samantha Darko (Daveigh Chase), it has been seven years since the death of her brother, Donnie. She has never been able to cope well with the loss and her life has kind of stalled, but she decides a change of locale might kick start her life. She is moving from Virginia to California, with her friend Corey (Briana Evigan) in tow. The trip starts off well, but when the friends cross into Utah, car trouble strikes. Now the two find themselves in a small town called Conejo Springs, where things really start to collapse around poor Samantha. A local windmill is struck by a meteorite, but that is just how it all begins. As she struggles to process the loss of her brother, Sam also has to deal with her feelings of alienation and like her brother, dark visions. But will she share her brother’s fate, or will Samantha’s path be a much different one?
There was quite a backlash from fans of Donnie Darko when a sequel was announced, but given the trend of nonstop remakes and sequels, this shouldn’t be a surprise. Donnie Darko was a cult hit and a solid movie, though one that lost its shine for me when viewed multiple times. Now we have a tale about Donnie’s little sister Samantha, played by Daveigh Chase, who reprises her role from the first picture. So how does little sister’s adventure stack up? I hope the filmmakers at least tried, but in the end this is a rushed, sloppy sequel pushed out to sap cash and little else. This does nothing to advance the storyline, never tries to break new ground, instead this is just bland, poorly crafted cinema. With little participation from folks involved in the original, the writing has to tip-toe around things and the basic creative element falls flat as well. This is not just a bad sequel, S. Darko is a bad movie and one that doesn’t even deserve to be rented.
Video: How does it look?
S. Darko is presented in 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen. The movie sucks, but this transfer is great. The visuals really shine, with a clean print and rock solid depth. Some scenes even that wonderful three dimensional sparkle, though not all show off that level of detail. The colors look good too, especially in a couple scenes where the hues really ramp up, while contrast is consistent at all times here. This is simply an impressive visual effort, great work.
Audio: How does it sound?
The audio keeps pace with the visuals, thanks to a dynamic DTS HD 5.1 option. This track has some of the best bass I’ve heard from recent releases, deep and loaded with impact. Not just here and there either, but a consistent barrage of bass that really adds some power to the mix. The surrounds are well used, but the material doesn’t demand intense presence. So the surrounds chime in when needed, then retreat a little. No issues with dialogue to mention either, this is one great soundtrack. This disc also includes a French language track, as well as subtitles in English, Spanish, and French.
Supplements: What are the extras?
An audio commentary has the director, writer, and cinematographer, all of whom are quite talkative. The track tends to be technical in focus, but there are some lighter moments as well. I did want to hear more about why the sequel was sparked, but that isn’t really covered here. This disc also includes two promotional featurettes, as well as some deleted scenes,