DON’T WORRY DARLING
WHAT WE’RE WATCHING WITH WALTER WILLIAMS
Don’t Worry Darling 3.5⭐
Welcome to Victory… an idyllic, utopian, experimental community where a young, happy couple “Alice” and “Jack” (Florence Pugh and singer/actor Harry Styles) live in the 1950’s with fast cars and a sexy lifestyle. However, the pretty housewife begins to question her reality and thinks not everything is right in this dessert community when she witnesses certain disturbing events unravelling that challenge her perception and make her doubt this glamorous corporate lifestyle. Could Victory possibly hide some very dark secrets? What exactly do the men do all day at the Headquarters, what’s with the earth tremors, unlimited credit cards, trolley/trams that won’t go beyond the town limits and so much more?
Sure it falls under the labels Drama, Mystery & Thriller, but don’t discount Horror. This movie follows a pattern of very disturbing Horror movies lately including “Smile” and “Nope” that challenge our perceptions of life as we know it. It’s almost like Alfred Hitchcock is back in style (not that he ever went away from my collection) or we’ve entered The Twilight Zone in 2022.
Director Olivia Wilde (who also plays “Bunny”) herself admits “Don’t Worry Darling” is influenced by “Inception” and “The Truman Show”. I’d like to add into the mix “Stepford Wives” and “The Matrix”. It may be Olivia Wilde’s movie, but she didn’t cast herself in the lead after she spotted Pugh in “Midsommar” and recast the part. Even with all that power Wilde still cast comic actor Nick Kroll as Bunny’s husband, which should have been our first clue that something was wrong with this seemingly perfect satellite community.
Wilde is a well known activist and is keen too push a feminist message in celluloid of the sublimation of females to create this perfect world…always cooking, cleaning and having sex with their husbands, because Victory society males demand submissiveness from their “wives”.
Lookout for: Busby Berkeley style geometric dancers that are never explained, but probably are a symbol of the uniformity and conformity of women in this movie. Signs in the Nightclub scene “Today Victory, Tomorrow The World” hint at Chris Pines character “Frank” and his ambition for world domination through his concept/vision of Victory. “Frank” is based on psychologist and author Jordan B. Patterson.
3 Things I love about “Don’t Worry Darling” (not be confused with the comedy play/movie “Not Now Darling”).
1. Mid-century Modern Architecture as the physical bones of this film, especially “Kaufmann Dessert House” (Frank’s house in the movie), which was made famous by Slim Aarons “Poolside Gossip” photo. It’s the first time a movie has been shot inside this home. The majority of exterior shots were filmed in Palm Springs because of the MCM homes. My favourite structure is famously known as Volcano House, located in the Mojave Dessert and it’s pivotal to making sense of this complex storyline…especially the open ending.
2. 50’s cars including: “Jacks” 1957 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible. Car nuts and Petrol Heads will drool over the vehicles parked in the driveways at Victory…that mysteriously all leave at the same time every morning when the husbands drive to “work”.
3. Great period soundtrack featuring Skeeter Davis, Ella Fitzgerald, Nancy Sinatra and so many more. It’s on my Spotify list now.
Goofs: The car chase scene. Simply because none of the other American period cars could have caught up with the Corvette in real life…that thing was seriously fast even for post war sports cars.
“Don’t Worry Darling” was shot on a tiny Hollywood budget of just $20,000,000, but it looks “Great Gatsby” expensive and will make its investors a fortune.
Problem is I’m not a fan of draw your own conclusion screenplays. To me that’s the writers job, not mine as a viewer or spectator.
I demand to know what the heck just happened for the last 2 hours.
“Don’t Worry Darling” we all have our own theories.