Within certain sectors of American Christianity – particularly those on the Nationalism side of the fence – is a huge enamoring of 1950’s – mid 1960’s culture. In their minds, those suburban Leave It To Beaver days was America at its most perfect. Perfectly manicured homes. Beautiful landscaping. The dinner parties. The laughter. Girls were girls and men were men…
…unlike 2022 when women were finding success as doctors working 30 hour shifts, CEO’s, managers, project directors and countless other careers. These women are thriving. Some of their men, not so much. Job opportunities run dry. Passion is lost. They let their hair grow out and just sit in front of the computer salty and jealous because their women have lives of their own and they don’t.
And that is the plight of Jack (Harry Styles); who watches his wife Alice (Florence Pugh) working those shifts with a simmering rage and jealousy. One day while searching the internet, he finds a podcast ran by Frank (Chris Pine), the leader of the Victory Project. Victory promises Jack the life that he wants – where he can be THE MAN and Alice can be the dainty little girly wife he wants her to be.
So…as with all 2022 era movies, he arranges the both of them to be put into…a 1950’s metaverse. In said metaverae, Alice is the perfect wife. Dinner prepped every night. Ballet classes daily to practice uniformity. Clothes immaculate. Swinging and swanky dinner parties. Passionate PASSIONATE sex. It all seems perfect…
…except for Alice being haunted. Haunted by memories of a forgotten past. Haunted by her neighbor who has caught on the deception. Haunted by an overwhelming sense of being trapped and suffocated.
Here’s the kicker about Don’t Worry Darling: the first 90 minutes of the flick are all in the metaverse. We don’t find out what REALLY happened – as detailed in the first section of this review – till the last 30 minutes or so. The moment we find out just what the heck is going on, I grinned.
Because I thought about those Nationalists. I thought about those pastors who have been outed for their indiscretions. I thought about those men who lost their careers over #metoo #timesup and others.
I thought about the vitriol I’ve seen from Christian communities, social media pages and comments from 10001 posts that shame our sisters for rising up and taking their authority as women of God AND women of modern society. I remembered the jealousy. The mocking. The sneering. The hate. The blaming of “woke” and “liberal culture.” The tweets I saw from Christian leaders and influencers that insinuate that women who pursue careers and college degrees are being deceived by Satan in an attempt to destroy God’s plan and design for family. To them, true deliverance is to go back to a modern day hybrid of that 1950’s utopia with Jack in his board meetings having cocktails after work and Alice in her SUV/Minivan shuffling off to school dropoffs, Target runs, soccer practices and all that…while she’s secretly haunted by memories of the woman she once was; the woman she STILL wants to be.
Yeah. I thought about all that. Amazing how Olivia Wilde and team packed all that allegory into this movie. This is one of those “either you get it or you don’t” kind of movies. I got it. And every time I think about it – and the truth and lies that it exposes, I can’t stop grinning!
Don’t Worry Darling is now available in theatres.