Buckle-up, internet. Daddy’s got some takes on ‘Don’t Worry Darling’ which you will likely scoff at. I’ve taken a few days to meditate on my thoughts, and I’m here to say that this movie *takes deep breath* really isn’t that bad.
*dodges tomato thrown at head*
It’s a serviceable story, with a stellar performance by Florence Pugh and a decent supporting role for Harry Styles.
*dodges 2nd tomato thrown at head*
I went into this movie fully expecting a stinker and I got something that is definitely more substantial than that. This isn’t to say that the film doesn’t have some flaws…it’s got BIG flaws with the story and pacing. However, I’m not going to get up and completely trash this one, because I don’t think it deserves it. It’s ultimately just a high-concept movie with sub-par quality execution. Nothing more, nothing less.
An Interesting Story, but Rather Predicable.
‘Don’t Worry Darling’ is the story of a community named Victory in 1950s or 60s America. We don’t know much about Victory but it seems to be a small, insular community located somewhere in the American southwest. Victory on the surface seems to be a community that has chosen an alternate path than the rest of society in pursuit of its own ideals.
The movie centers around a young married couple, Alice Chambers (Florence Pugh) and her husband Jack Chambers (Harry Styles). Throughout the film, Alice becomes more and more disillusioned with their role within Victory and their relationships with other community members. In her dissatisfaction, she starts to dig into why they are there and what the actual intent of the Victory community is. Her curiosity and discontent eventually leads to conflict amongst the higher-ranking members of the community (played by Chris Pine and Gemma Chan) and even her own husband.
This is Olivia Wilde’s second directorial effort after ‘Booksmart’. It is truly an ambitious undertaking for a 2nd-time director, and from a visual standpoint it is absolutely gorgeous. You can say what you want about all of the outside issues that seemingly plagued this film, but you cannot debate that Wilde has a fantastic visual sense. In other words, Olivia Wilde is talented AF and she deserves a TON of credit.
That being said, the pacing and story execution is where this movie seems to struggle. You can blame it on poor writing and/or a flimsy screenplay, but Wilde will have to take some of the blame for how the movie is paced. Without getting too spoiler-y, there is a twist to this film, that while interesting, seems terribly mismanaged in it’s presentation. We know Wilde can direct, but hopefully she can work out some kinks before her next film.
For Your Consideration, Harry Styles?
Make no mistake about it, Florence Pugh is a POWERHOUSE. She really does carry most of the film. At the same time, I would say my most unpopular take here is that no one else’s acting performance in the film is bad. Chris Pine, Gemma Chan and Olivia Wilde are particularly good, Nick Kroll has a few decent moments, and no, Harry Styles does not stink. In fact, I think he’s actually pretty good for the role. Now, you’re not going to see me leading the campaign for a Styles Best Supporting Actor nomination like I’m sure some crazy Harry Super-Fans will, but he is not the problem here.
“Don’t Worry Darling’ isnt the stinker that the internet is making it out to be. I’m willing to put my reputation on the line with this take. Is it great? Nah. Is it going to make my “Top-10” list for 2022? Certainly not. But it’s a well acted film, with an interesting concept for a story.
I don’t think it would be off-base to say that I was expecting a stinker, and was disappointed that it wasn’t terrible enough for me to make fun of.
VERDICT: 3 out of 5 stars. Maybe worth a watch down the road when it’s available to stream? Or not, do whatever you want. I’m not your dad.
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