If you’re looking for something new, different, and with an edgy appeal… Somebody’s Darling may be the one for you. Find out why.
Somebody’s Darling is the directorial debut for Sharad Kant Patel as well as co-written by himself and Sebastian Mathews. The film stars Paul Galvan, Jessa Settle, Fred Parker Jr., Matt Tramel, Cathy Baron, and Kristen Tucker.
A brooding mysterious fraternity president becomes obsessed with a coed despite having it all in his privileged existence. What begins as a hopeful romance twists into obsession, and he risks his socialstanding in his pursuit of her heart. It seems that a positive change of character might bloom as he drifts away from the misogynistic, hedonist ways of his frat brothers. But a dark secret seems to cloak it all, and glimpses of truth surface in his surreal visions and dreams. Huge and horrible revelations mark the violent finale of this retro-styled, psychological, horror drama touching upon current issues of date rape culture, southern history, and privilege.
Somebody’s Darling is a slow-burn that delivers. While it moves slow, the film demands that its viewer remain unnerved and skeptical the entire run-time. It causes you to feel unsafe, as any film that attempts to be a social commentary on rape culture should cause. One of the things I loved about it was how they never romanticized the obsession that Christian Rone (Paul Galvan) had for Jessa Settle’s character, Sarah. There is never a moment that you want them to end up together. Their brief romantic moment is still tainted by an eerie presence that Christian projects no matter the circumstances.
Without the talented acting of Paul Galvan and Jessa Settle, the film wouldn’t have been able to achieve its goal. Paul Galvan exceeds expectations as the brooding fraternity president who just can’t seem to shake his desire for Sarah. Jessa Settle does an amazing job as the uninterested Sarah. After her friend tells Sarah that there are many nicknames that they came up with for her, all of which share the same tone as Ice Queen, she seems to adjust how she treats men. Instead of letting them down hard, she lets them down easy, too easy. Her subtle hints don’t work on Christian. In fact, they add fuel to the fire.
In the background, there is something going on with the fraternity Christian is president of. It seems they are drugging girls with a new date-rape drug. The chemical they are giving them seems to cause the unsuspecting women to need their attackers, sexually. They walk around like zombie’s and begin to flock to the fraternity to get their fix almost compulsively. This leads the viewer to suspect that somehow the roles are reversed with Christian and Sarah. That he, in his effort to drug her, in fact, drugged himself.
As the movie continues we watch Christian deteriorate. He begins to look as if he is dying. All the while, he is still obsessing over Sarah even though she has a boyfriend. She keeps trying to tell Christian that their relationship is simple, just friends. However, his possessiveness leads to violent visions and him getting deeper into his sickness and obsession. It will all lead to a violent and shocking conclusion that will leave your mouth on the floor.
Honestly, I loved this movie. It hit most, if not all, hypocrisies that women face today. Your friends tell you that it’s fine to turn men down but you don’t have to be so bitchy about it. Then, a “soft” no isn’t enough for men. Maybe, he didn’t know you wanted him to back off? Ultimately, it leads to the question of whether you were letting a guy down easy, or if you were just leading him on? This film is a great eye-opener for the college crowd to show how everyone in a situation plays a part in something terrible possibly going down. Stick up for your friends, don’t chastise them for being able to speak up for themselves, and always have their back if, unfortunately, something bad happens. They will need you in that moment more than ever.
Final Thoughts on Somebody’s Darling:
Somebody’s Darling was entertaining, unsettling, and ultimately shocking as the credits rolled. While it is a slow-burn it is still incredibly intriguing and pays off in the end. The last time I was this impressed, was a film called Parasites. We need films, such as these, to bring light to social injustices and criticize society. Most of all, we need them to spark conversation if we can ever hope to achieve the world that I truly believe is wanted by most of us.