In Donnie Darko there is an exchange between Donnie's parents about some behavior over which they were called in to see the principal. Later, they are sitting together, eating in silence, each lost in their own thoughts, until:

Rose Darko: I don't think telling any woman to forcibly insert an object into her anus is something that should go without consequence.

Edward Darko: I think we should buy him a moped.

Rose Darko: I think we should get a divorce.

(beat) They both start laughing.

That exchange could make it into a movie based on the 'Rule of Funny', but I was wondering, is there some deeper significance to it that I missed?

  • As an aside, this is from the 'Directors Cut', so I cannot guarantee it was in the version released in theaters. Nov 27, 2013 at 1:02

1 Answer 1


Personally, I don't think there's any deeper significance in the line. It comes off, to me at least, as very much the opposite of punishment for bad behavior.

I'm not even sure 'Rule of Funny' applies here either, since it doesn't seem to violate any logic. It sounds like an attempt at shedding some light on the personality of Donnie's dad by his suggesting Donnie be rewarded (as much as one can consider a moped to be a reward, anyway) for his poor behavior, namely due to the fact that no one really likes Kitty.

As for Rose's reply, this is likely another personality showcase. She realizes her husband is joking, but she doesn't necessarily agree with his idea of getting Donnie a moped for a reward, so she comes back with a joke of her own. It does a good job of portraying the juxtaposition of personalities, to an extent, of Donnie's parents; carefree (dad) versus serious (mom).

Another example of these two personalities would be at dinner near the beginning, when Donnie and his sister are fighting. Their mother is very serious, while their father is flippant.

  • this is a good thought!
    – John
    Oct 27, 2016 at 8:08

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