Jacob's LadderDirector: Adrian Lyne, Tim Robbins, Elizabeth Peña, Danny Aiello
A tortured man finds himself caught in a middle-ground between hallucination and reality in this supernatural thriller, scripted by Bruce Joel Rubin of Ghost (1990) and My Life (1993). Jacob Singer (Tim Robbins) is a soldier stationed in Vietnam who undergoes a traumatic experience on the battlefield - the nature of which is initially unclear. The film then moves into his post-Vietnam experience in 1970s New York, where he feels consistently traumatized, but can never quite remember exactly what happened to him in Southeast Asia or to free himself from his anxieties over the recent tragic death of his young son (Macaulay Culkin). Though well educated, Jacob works as a letter carrier for the U.S. Postal Service and has become romantically involved with one of his co-workers, Jezzie (Elizabeth Pena), after divorcing his wife. Soon, Jacob's tenuous hold on reality starts to slip as horrifying events befall him; he is nearly run over by a subway train, pursued by faceless demons in cars, and spots reptilian tails and horns protruding from the bodies of those he encounters. Jacob also suffers severe panic attacks related to the chaos that may be reality, or may exist only in his mind. He seeks counsel from Louis (Danny Aiello), a kindly chiropractor, as his ex-wife Sarah (Patricia Kalember), fellow Vietnam vet Paul (Pruitt Taylor Vince), and enigmatic stranger Michael (Matt Craven) all try to help the tortured soul. Jason Alexander, Ving Rhames and Eriq LaSalle highlight the supporting cast.
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Cast & Crew
|Connie Brink||Special Effects|
|Jeremy Conway||Art Director|
|Steven Dewey||Special Effects|
|Kathleen Dolan||Set Decoration/Design|
|FX Smith, Inc.||Special Effects|
|W. Steven Graham||Art Director|
|Maurice Jarre||Score Composer|
|Mario Kassar||Executive Producer|
|Tod A. Maitland||Sound/Sound Designer|
|Ellen Mirojnick||Costumes/Costume Designer|
|Brian Morris||Production Designer|
|Bruce Joel Rubin||Associate Producer,Screenwriter|
|Gordon J. Smith||Makeup Special Effects|
|Andrew G. Vajna||Executive Producer|
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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This is a very strange but very worthwhile film. If you can sit through the parts that seem to make no sense, the end will explain everything. The finale is both sad and uplifting at the same time. I found the dual narrative structure a little hard to follow at first, but it was great once I figured it out. While not exactly shocking, the ending may surprise you, and it will totally change your view of the story. I highly recommend this to fans of The Sixth Sense.
I remember watching this movie when it came out in 1990, and being very confused. I only watched the movie, instead of viewing the details and listening to the dialogue. It took a couple of viewings, and television interview with the Director, for me to finally "get it". The basic plot is about a Vietnam veteran who is experiencing various visions of demons and other strange phenomena. Are the visions reality, or did the US government experiment on some of our US soldiers fighting in Vietnam? Hmm, would our government do that in the movies? The movie start off in Vietnam, then fast forwards to the present, and then flashes back to Vietnam at times throughout the movie. I really enjoyed the acting of Elizabeth Pena and Danny Aiello. I really like Danny, and wish there were more scenes of him in the movie. Ving Rhames is also in the movie, as one of Tim Robbins Vietnam buddies, and Jason Alexander of Seinfeld, as a lawyer. I would recommend a couple of viewings, as you will miss things the first time. All in all, I really enjoyed the movie, and learned to appreciate the ending. I know some people do not like it, but I liked the "choice" that Jacob Singer makes on where he ultimately goes!