I already posted something like this in the JC, but I'm reposting it because this is a better environment and the old thread was surprisingly versatile (ie, people were actually discussing in it). THIS WILL HAVE SPOILERS!! Go see the movie before you discuss it! Idiot. Feel free to quote and whatnot, but I think this could also use some attempts to unravel this really complicated film. I think there are two clear symbols in the movie, though I'm not quite sure what they mean. The American flag is one. Donnie has the flag hung up on his ceiling, and we first see it on his sleepwalking journey to see Frank. I'm not sure where else it makes an appearance, except (a) the jet engine tears through it when it hits the house and (b) in a DVD deleted scene showing a mortally wounded Donnie after the crash, and the flag has been snagged on the engine and (c) it makes up part of the photo mosaic of Frank on the cover. I've heard a convincing argument that this is a symbolic way of criticizing the Republican Party policies of the 1980s. I think the Sparkle Motion group is another symbol, though I don't know what it's of. One scene on the DVD is entitled "Autumn Queen vs. Sparkle Motion," referring to the fact that the unpopular Chinese girl gives a cheap-looking performance and is essentially run off the stage, whereas Sparkle Motion gets all sorts of glitz and glitter onstage and is loved by the crowd. The liberal teacher plays into this somehow, as she applauds the Chinese girl more than Sparkle Motion. Later, when she loses her job, she shouts an unladylike word without realizing the Chinese girl is nearby, then kind of smiles at her; when she goes back into the school, she's disgusted to learn that Sparkle Motion is going to Star Search. Another confusing thing is the spiral on the jet engine, though with the web site it just seems that was a way to identify the plane that it came from. The web site is creepy as hell, by the way. Discuss!