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Rated R; running time of 102 minutes
Written by: Massy Tadjedin
Directed by: John Maybury
Cast: Adrien Brody, Keira Knightley, Kris Kristofferson, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Daniel Craig, Kelly Lynch Bremner
WARNING - SPOILERS BELOW.
Itís 1991 and the middle of The Gulf War and Jack Starks (Adrien Brody) has just been brutally shot in the head. In narration, this is when he claims to have died the first time. After being left for dead, Dr.ís rally and save his life, but I suspect he wishes they hadnít. His body heals, but his mind is splintered. He goes back to the States and just drifts around hitchhiking from place to place. He helps a family with a car trouble, but his bad habit gets him into a world of trouble when he next catches a ride from a stranger who turns out to be a psycho. This stranger kills a police officer and frames Jack for the murder. Before you can say ďbooĒ, Jack is in a hospital for the criminally insane.
It is here at the hospital he comes in contact with, Dr. Becker (Kris Kristofferson), who seems to be the one with a loose screw, not Jack. This wingnut of a Doctor begins experimenting on Jack. He confine him in a straightjacket and sticks him in the morgue (um eww). This confinement is to "reset his violent proclivities." The doctor theorizes that in this condition, Jack will have no choice, but to think about his actions. Itís like a timeout for big people. But somehow, Jack ends up in the year 2007, 15 years in the future.
In 2007 he meets Jackie (Keira Knightley), who was the little girl he helped with the car trouble. He tries in earnest to convince her that he didnít commit the crime and beg of her help to help him sort through fiction and reality. He has to figure out the mystery of his life before January 1, 1993 because that is the end date on his tombstone.
Can he get Jackie to help him and will he be able to do it before he dies again.
I was pleasantly surprised by this movie. I tend to dislike the ďbait and switchĒ A movie that I expect to be one way and it turns out to be hugely different. I also like to know ahead of time if Iím going to have to actually think . You know what I mean. Sometimes I just want to start at the screen and not have to contemplate the meaning of life. > The Jacket did just that. It tricked me into thinking it a much different movie, and god forbid, I actually had to do some thinking. Thatís okay. I just prefer to be prepared.
That said, it is not with out flaws. Some aspects needed explanation and we werenít given it and other times, the reverse was true. Adrien Brody and Kiera Knightly, kind of floated through the movies as if they were uninterested at times. Maybe that was the point, but it just didnít seem like they had much vested in this production.
Be prepared to scratch your head and hit the rewind button a few times, but it is worth the rental, but you can wait awhile before adding it to your collection.
At times, this one will make you think youíre crazy.
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Copyright Kamal "The Diva" Larsuel-Ulbricht, 2005
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