Set in the 1950s, Don’t Worry Darling follows a housewife named Alice (Florence Pugh), who lives with her husband Jack (Harry Styles). Life for Alice is perfect as she lives in a loving community filled with solid friendships and beauty. Each day her husband goes to work and comes home to a clean house, a lovely cooked meal, and Alice greets him by the door, all dressed up. Life generally couldn’t be any simpler for both Alice and Jack.
However, Alice begins to make huge discoveries within the community, and things once classed as glamorous become increasingly alarming. As suspicions grow, Alice begins to doubt her husband’s work and questions the many rules, including never being able to leave the community. Can Alice discover the truth about life and the world she lives in? Don’t Worry Darling is best described as a thriller. For the most part, the film hinges on one ultimate mystery- is everything around Alice true or false? It’s a highly familiar theme and concept, and many films with the same premise, such as The Truman Show, can be named.
It should be no surprise that actress Florence Pugh shines brighter than gold. Her character Alice has great strength and determination and is a major highlight of this film. When major discoveries about her life are made, the character has strong emotions, and Pugh nails the role flawlessly. Actor Chris Pine also has a strong presence on-screen whenever he appears and shines even more whenever he shares a scene with Florence Pugh. Harry Styles as Jack is generally fine and delivers a performance that doesn’t feel overly new or exciting.
Packed with a comfortable soundtrack and creative imagery, Don’t Worry Darling successfully consist of moments that build tension and make audiences feel uneasy. As for the dialogue, I can’t deny that some conversations and monologues go on far longer than ideal, making key scenes drag on. If certain trims were made, the film would feel far smoother with its pace and duration. While the story is exciting and engaging with its mystery, many moments are not explained, leaving some audience members scratching their heads and attempting to process all the minor mysteries presented throughout. The main plot makes sense at its core but is extremely familiar and misses the mark of delivering something new or stepping into something wilder.
Overall, while delivering a concept that feels extremely familiar with its thrilling aspect, Don’t Worry Darling still brings a few solid moments to the screen, including the stunning performance from Florence Pugh, an unsettling soundtrack and creative visuals. However, with many moments that drag on far longer than I prefer and some dialogue that feels extremely long and clunky, the film misses its mark at leaving a lasting impression. Sure, the core plot is clear and makes sense; however, when it comes to the many minor details, many viewers will be left scratching their heads and walking away with more questions than peaceful conclusions.