We Blame The Writers
Our Editor’s Jumbled Takes On Jumbled, Don’t Worry Darling.
WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD.
Leading up to the release of Don’t Worry Darling, we wrote about almost everything except the movie. See Let’s Talk About the Mid-Century Interior Design in ‘Don’t Worry Darling,’ or, Everybody’s Worrying, Darling - All the ‘Don’t Worry Darling’ Cast Drama, Explained, and lots more.
For those who have seen the movie, this logic makes sense. Dissecting the body language at Venice is easier than dissecting the “movie-movie.” Researching where to find mid-century dupes makes more sense than researching ‘plane in DWD?’
But after requesting privacy during the oh-so-confusing-post-DWD-experience, we’re ready to confront our demons and talk about what happened – or didn’t happen – during those 125 minutes.
And why not start with the end in mind and make our conversation equally as confusing as the movie itself?
Editors Featured: Jenna McGoldrick, Jai Phillips, LKC
LKC: I can’t stop thinking about how it was only half the original script.
Jai: Yes! She finds a house that’s on a block or something that’s for sale, goes in and then finds out that she’s been living in ‘alt-life’ and the year is 2050 and she files for divorce from Jack.
Jenna: Okay. So, underdeveloped there.
Jai: There’s a lot that didn’t get fully developed.
LKC: It sounds crazier. Honestly, I like that the ending was ambiguous and they didn’t close loose ends, but I wish they developed it more on the front end. I feel like they spent so much time setting up the vibe and talking about how great Victory was without setting up any breadcrumbs.
Jenna: It just took so long. And what was with the black-and-white snippets of the girls? That felt so out of place to me.
LKC: I think that’s the hypnotizing thing. That’s what she’s seeing when she’s in the bed hypnotizing device.
Jai: Yeah, she thinks she’s hallucinating but it’s just Harry holding her hostage.
Jenna: I’ll never call him Jack.
Jai: He’s Harry in this movie.
LKC: For real, he’s fully singing and dancing in it.
Jai: The tap scene – we didn’t need it. We just didn’t.
LKC: It was allegorical but had nothing to do with the plot. It made no sense.
Jenna: Every time Chris yelled ‘Dance Boy!’ I was just like am I missing something?
Jai: So many questions about it all. It took me two years to figure out the whole plane thing.
Jenna: Wait, I still don’t get it.
LKC: Yeah, I don’t understand it even now.
Jai: Someone said it was the simulation glitching – like they were hallucinating. But others said it was Kiki Layne’s son who played with the airplane and they somehow blended it in.
Jenna: Yeah I thought it was Kiki Layne dropping hints that it wasn’t real?
LKC: Well they allegedly cut out a bunch of Kiki Layne’s scenes so maybe it was in the original and what they kept in made no sense?
Jenna: I felt the same about Sydney Chandler's story. Like she knew something and always looked worried half the movie.
LKC: I feel like the people at the dinner party who all had the same stories of how they met were being held hostage. Jack and Alice obviously know each other, but I think the other couples there don’t know each other and the men have them there.
Jai: I saw that!
LKC: Yeah, when they’re filling out the form to go into Victory they could check if they’re in a pre-existing relationship…
Jai: So. Not consensual sex after all because they’re just having sex in a simulation and not consenting in real life.
Jenna: And why do they even have the same backstories? For such an intricate program like Victory you think they’d give a few more options?
Jai: Yeah, tie up the loose ends, Chris.
Jenna: Also – what was up with the rumbles and the lamp posts popping when Florence leaves?
Jai: I honestly don’t know. I genuinely thought she had superpowers.
Jenna: Yeah, it’s a superhero movie at this point.
Jai: It’s giving Harry Potter right now and I don’t know where we’re going with it.
Jenna: Yeah, and Buzzfeed’s piece said it couldn’t just be Florence realizing she’s trapped since everyone felt it?
LKC: Maybe it’s like when Instagram doesn’t open and the app glitches.
Jai: Wait – in the original script she goes back into the Victory Project and confronts Jack and threatens to shove a broom inside him until he relents and then she goes back to 2050 where he follows her and she stabs him and then she ends up back in Victory in a hospital where the doctor tells her she killed her husband and is delusional but then Bunny shows up and tells her there’s another exit portal and goes back.
Jenna: That just confused me even more.
LKC: Why does he die in real life if he dies in the simulation?
Jenna: I thought she said they will kill you? But do you die in real life when you die there?
LKC: The guys do. Allegedly. Like Harry’s dead.
Jai: Yeah he’s gone. Dead in real life. But then what happens when she wakes up? She just dances?
LKC: Also no one checked on her? No one called? She has patients.
Jenna: And don’t act like you live in that tiny apartment, you’re a surgeon.
Jai: Maybe Harry sent a little email to her work to quit for her.
LKC: But no friends? People liked her at work. You could tell!
Jai: Harry was right, it is a movie.
LKC: The thing is that it didn’t feel like a movie. I think he meant it in the sense of people need to go to the theater to get the spectacle. And sure it was pretty, but I would have liked to pause it on HBO and come back to it tomorrow.
Jenna: I would have loved some replays. Someone called it a spectacular disaster and I think that’s on par.
Jai: I couldn’t tell if Harry was a bad actor or if his acting was just because they were making him scream all the time.
LKC: They said it didn’t give him much in the sense of emotional gravitas – like all he had was the meme scene and then yelling. But I do agree that because he was charming for most of it, it made sense that they picked Harry rather than Shia. It would have been way scarier.
LKC: Way more sinister. And if it was Shia and Olivia that would have been older and scarier.
Jai: The only thing DWD proves is that the only thing a man needs to do to be considered attractive is to just take care of himself a bit. Harry as an incel with the hair, the glasses, and no skincare routine? All he had to do was take a shower and wash his face. That’s it.
LKC: That’s the article. A skincare routine that can take you from Incel Jack to Victory Jack.
LKC: I did see a piece that said making him unattractive in the real world diminishes the point that it’s trying to prove: that incel-looking guys are the only people that can act like this. When so many other guys could have been like this.
Jai: Yeah, Chris Pine should have been hot in the real world.
LKC: Exactly. Because those guys that like Jordan Peterson – who it’s based on – they’re obsessed with him. I think they think he’s hot. They’re in love with him.
Jenna: Chris Pine just didn’t get developed or really have the space to be better. What was he talking about half the time?
LKC: Same with Gemma Chan. They gave her a run at best-supporting actress with the monologue, but her role made no sense – why was she part of it?
Jai: Did she take over?
LKC: Yeah, she took over. But in the ballet class when she had that whole montage of ‘control, ladies’ – she was indoctrinating them in class which shows that she was part of it, but why? And when she killed him and she said he failed? What did he fail, though?
Jenna: Like he failed not controlling Florence?
LKC: But he was acting like he was controlling her and teasing her in this ‘little game.’
Jenna: And Margaret wasn’t a worthy foe but Alice was?
Jai: Alright, I wish they cut half the movie and then delved into a new hour that actually explained things.
LKC: They kept the aesthetics when what we needed was a plot.
Jai: It was lacking in so many parts and then the end came so fast.
Jenna: Wait, so then the glass coming in on her and the egg scene. Do you guys think that was just a glitch?
LKC: No, that's what I thought Chris Pine was doing – like he was trying to make her think she was going crazy.
Jai: WOW, OKAY.
Jenna: Never even thought about that.
LKC: But there seemed to be no end to it because that would make her more suspicious. And other people didn’t have her experiences which means it wasn’t a glitch, but it had to have been intentional. But it was all to just no real end.
Jenna: So you think he controls everything?
Jai: Well, they could have just put that in the end then! Like just one clip.
LKC: Or in his rant to her at dinner? He could have just referenced those things so we knew that he knows. Also. When the doctor comes with the file from Margaret – if it’s a simulation why would you need a file?
Jenna: I figured since it was all redacted that it was just a prop/test and he knew she was going to take it.
LKC: Exactly. Like this is the whole game he’s playing with her. The only breadcrumb that actually came to fruition is when the doctor said, ‘What is it you Brits say? Keep calm and carry on?’ and I don’t think that was even around in the 50s. And Harry looked so confused.
LKC: Do all of the guys work for Chris Pine in the real world? Someone compared it to Joe Rogan’s empire.
Jai: Or Hustle University?
LKC: Yeah, like that’s exactly what they do. So he lost his job and now he ‘goes to work.’
Jenna: So they’re all together in the real world doing God knows what.
Jai: But where were they when Florence got to HQ the first time?
LKC: They were working.
Jai: Well where are they parking?!
Jenna: And why didn’t she wake up in bed the first time she left?
Jai: Yeah. Right? Maybe Harry was in the house and he said nope.
Jenna: Yeah, but the second time she was good?
LKC: Maybe because Harry’s totally gone? Like deleted?
Jai: And she’s been in bed for three years – how did she get her legs out of those things and pop up?
Jenna: She’s gonna need more than the water drip.
Jai: I don’t think we resolved anything.
LKC: I will say that there were a lot of plot holes but those aren’t Olivia’s fault. That’s a writing and production thing, but it's because it’s now dubbed Olivia Wilde's movie…
Jenna: Totally. The movie was beautiful, I thought the acting was good, especially Florence – I guess there’s nothing from a director's angle that I’m critiquing.
LKC: Someone said Florence was boringly directed, but I think the script was just crazy. There was nowhere for anyone to go.
LKC: Honestly, it wasn’t excruciating. It was just such a long beginning and then the end was fine.
Jai: My friends said they’d give it a 57% and I agree. I didn’t hate it, it was just a mess and I needed more.
Jenna: I think 38% on Rotten Tomatoes is pretty low. And if you’re left wanting more then maybe that’s a good thing – better than wanting to turn it off.
LKC: I’ve seen way worse movies – BLONDE? Turned it off ten minutes in.
[Editors derail conversation into Blonde]
LKC: The point is that the script is written by a man and I think she was trying to do the best she could with what she had and make it about female sex and female empowerment but really it’s not because all the female sex isn’t consensual. So it’s kind of a problem with the marketing.
Jai: The move would have been for Olivia Wilde to say ‘the script was shitty and about men and I tried to make it about women.’ Then I would have been like this isn’t that bad.
LKC: There just wasn’t enough in there to get the whole story.
Jai: She needs to come out with a statement and break everything down.
LKC: She doesn’t even know!
Score: A solid 60. Honestly, just watch it and Don’t Worry About It.