Donnie Darko?! Please help! (Spoiler)?


Ok wow I am very confused. I have no idea what happened when Frank jumped out of the car after killing Donnie’s girlfriend. So does that mean Frank was a real person? And then at the end when «Mad World» is playing they show Frank again? Huh? and Why did Donnie and his friends go up to the Grandma’s house? And if the airplane engine fell into Donnie’s room from the plane that his mom and sister were on, does that mean they are going to die? Because I thought Donnie was changing the future by staying in his room when it fell? What is going on? haha I am so confused. I know that is a lot of questions but please explain to me the ending, and the questions I have asked. Thank you so so so much! =D


Frank is a real person, he is Donnie’s sister’s boyfriend.

His mum and sister don’t die on the plane as the Tangent Universe is reset. That plane journey never happens.

It’s probably easier to explain the whole film rather than just those individual parts.

In the beginning a jet engine crashes through Donnie’s bedroom. The jet engine is actually from the future. There was a corruption in time and the engine fell through it and arrived on October 2nd. This has now created a Tangent Universe (TU) and the next 28 days is set in this alternate reality. This TU will only last 28 days before it collapses and destroys itself and the Primary Universe. During this collapse, a timestorm will form with a time portal that leads back to the birth of the Tangent Universe (Oct 2nd).

Artifacts are evidence that a TU has been created, they are made from metal. The jet engine in this case is the Artifact and the only way to prevent the universe being destroyed is to send the Artifact back through the time portal, back to Oct 2nd.

Because Donnie was closest to the Jet Engine when it arrives he becomes the Living Receiver. The Living Receiver’s role is to guide the Artifact back to the Primary Universe. The Living Receiver is granted some special powers during his time in the TU. Increased strength, the ability to conjure fire and water and telekinesis are some of them. He uses strength to bury the axe into the solid bronze school mascot. He floods the school and burns Jim Cunningham’s house down, fire and water. He uses telekinesis to rip the jet engine off the plane at the end of the film to send it through the time portal.

Anyone connected to the Living Receiver who dies in the TU becomes Manipulated Dead. These people are very powerful have the ability to travel through time. Frank is killed in the TU and therefore becomes one of the Manipulated Dead. He travels back in time and helps Donnie with his quest to return the Artifact. The first thing he must do is save Donnie by waking him up before he gets squashed by the jet engine. He is like a reverse ghost who appears before he was killed.

All the people connected to the Living Receiver are the Manipulated Living and these people will subconsciously help guide the Living receiver. They will behave in the exact perfect way necessary to push Donnie toward his eventual destiny. Nearly every event in the film has a specific purpose designed to aid Donnie to save the Universe. The driving force behind there behaviour is God; It’s actually a very religious film, the idea that you follow god’s channel to decide your own fate.

At the end of the film Donnie guides the engine through the time portal and this restores the Primary Universe back to October 2nd, the moment the Tangent Universe was created. The last 28 days never happened and Donnie wakes up in his bed laughing. The jet engine Donnie sent through the time portal then falls into his bedroom killing him.

My personal explanation, not a cut & paste answer


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