Wednesday, January 29, 2014

DBH Review-Jacob's Ladder(1990)

By Eric Polk-
The early 1990s were a transitional time for horror films. The golden age of the slasher was on life support, the box office takes for other subgenres were decreasing release from release. However, from these dying embers rose the 'psychological thriller'. Ahh yes, let's put out a horror movie with well-known actors and actresses but not say its a horror movie. Sad but in this time some very fine movies came out such as Silence of the Lambs, Seven, etc. Jacob's Ladder is a great addition to this class.

Played by Tim Robbins, Jacob is a Vietnam vet haunted by lucid flashbacks both prior to and during the war. His hallucinations are bizarre in nature and affect his relationship with his girlfriend(or is it his wife and kids?). His flashbacks are deepening and worsening so he must delve into the truth about what happened to him back in the Mekong Delta with the aid of his chiropractor and a few classic books.

I truly love these kind of movies, the kind that are trippy, symbolic, and make you pay attention. You do have to watch this multiple times to get the entire meaning of what is going on. If you like you movies straight, non-linear, you won't like this movie. Don't let the mainstream casting and appearance by a pre-Home Alone Macaulay Culkin fool you, this is a horror movie. Albeit, one that is grounded in reality(PTSD and what the United States government did to solders during the war). There are some rather gruesome scenes that augment Jacob's journey into...well...I won't give it away here. If you haven't seen this, I highly recommend this to you.


Jennifurla said...

Classic, one that I love too.

ssshhhh.. said...

this movie has one of the best depictions of astral purgatory. Check out this deleted scene from Jacob's Ladder

T. Phoria said...

This movie horrified me when I was a kid because I had NO idea what was going on in it. Then once I was an adult it horrified me because I sort of had an idea what was going on in it.