Film Review: Don’t Worry Darling – More Drama Than Movie


Samantha George

The 2022 film “Don’t Worry Darling” directed by actress Olivia Wilde sparked public interest much before it hit the box office. Olivia Wilde put together a cast of star-studded actors including Florence Pugh, Chris Pine, Gemma Chan, and everyone’s favorite ex-boy band member, Harry Styles. But what really drew a lot of people into watching the film was all of the drama it was steeped in. From Olivia Wilde getting served her divorce papers on stage, to Harry Styles allegedly spitting on Chris Pine, I think it’s safe to say everyone was more interested in the drama surrounding the film than the actual movie itself. But for all the bad publicity it got, the film has brought an impressive 19.2 million dollars into the box office during its opening week. 


The movie is set in a place called the Victory Project where Alice (Florence Pugh) lives with her husband Jack (Harry Styles). The scene is set up like an idyllic 1950s town: a pastel image of perfection and bliss. The soundtrack features songs from that era and adds to the carefully constructed image of the Victory Project. Alice enjoys being a housewife and caretaker of her husband, asking for almost nothing in return. But soon, she discovers that the Victory Project is not what it seems. Disturbing images and warped realities lead Alice on a chase to find the truth. 


The movie started out promising at first. Matthew Libatique, the cinematography director did an excellent job at making the film seem set in a perfect world with a current of something sinister bubbling under it. As always, Florence Pugh’s acting was phenomenal, her depth of emotion convinced viewers of the fear and emotional turmoil she had. The visuals and Pugh’s superb acting made Alice seem trapped and isolated, unable to figure out what was happening around her. Chris Pine (Frank) delivers an equally amazing performance, acting as a sly villain who tortures Alice throughout the film. The eerie details do a great job of drawing the viewers in. The best part for me, however, was the plot twist. I won’t spoil it, but it felt creative and really did shock me.


But there are some obvious shortcomings to the film. For starters, the second half of the film wasn’t captivating. We got answers about the Victory Project, but they were all vague. The movie tried to be deep and make critiques about patriarchy and misogyny, but it end up repeating basic feminist rhetoric- that women should be free and that patriarchy is bad. The movie had the potential to be insightful but didn’t really do anything special. 


Unfortunately, as much as I wanted to give Harry Styles the benefit of the doubt, his acting was mediocre at best. His emotional scenes felt a little hollow and somehow made me laugh. Though, one of the funniest things in the whole movie was his dancing scene- which I’ll leave you to enjoy at the movie theater. Harry has his own strengths, and should probably stay doing what he is good at. 


As much as I found the movie unfulfilling, I think it’s a great film to watch with friends. If you have some spare time and want to watch a good movie at the theater, I would definitely recommend watching Don’t’ Worry Darling. Just don’t expect a masterpiece.