The Jacket | Chicago Reader

The Jacket

This gothic jigsaw puzzle, directed by John Maybury (Love Is the Devil) from a script by many hands, promises to be another Jacob's Ladder but doesn't deliver. Maybury's art-world talents don't include storytelling, and his visceral bursts of fast editing and extreme close-ups don't yield any full-blown characters, narrative, or political vision (though I could swear I heard Noam Chomsky's voice briefly coming from a TV). Leapfrogging between 1992 and 2007 and between fantasy and reality, the plot concerns an American GI (Adrien Brody) who nearly dies from a head wound during the first gulf war, gets framed for the murder of a cop back in his native Vermont, and winds up in a hospital for the criminally insane, where an evil shrink (Kris Kristofferson) performs hideous experiments on him. With Keira Knightley, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Kelly Lynch, and music by Brian Eno. The executive producers include George Clooney and Steven Soderbergh—maybe they can explain what's going on. R, 104 min.

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