If you don't like this, we can't be friends.
Did you people see the same film I saw?
While it doesn't offer any answers, it both thrills and makes you think.
The film centers around Jacob, who is weird and defensive and maybe a jerk or maybe a misunderstood, damaged soul. Jacob's girlfriend is pregnant and then he gets a call that his father has died in an accident. So Jacob goes home. Rory Culkin as Jacob is in almost every scene and that's a good thing. Even though this film was disturbing and ultimately disappointing, I watched all of it. It kept me on the edge of my seat, wanting to know what the hell was going on. Which is part of this movie's problem: too much was going on. Had the story been stripped to its bones and had the film been cut back in length, it would've been better. As it is, it's atmospheric but frustrating and messy. It's beautifully shot and Rory Culkin was pretty amazing. I read another review saying he was basically a block of ice but I completely disagree. The leads (especially Culkin) made what otherwise would've been crappy dialogue sound natural and all round I thought the cast was decent to very good. What I don't get is why anyone would hire Natasha Lyonne or Nikki Reed to then only give them one short scene. Makes me suspect scenes were cut and somebody hadn't figured out beforehand what do storywise.
There is a list published of the events that cause the most stress and trauma in the human experience. The #1 "event" listed is death of a spouse. Surprisingly, losing a parent is not that high up on the list,although many of us would beg to differ. There are many events not included in the list. Culkin is phenomenal as the snotty hipster turned severely emotionally damaged as he delves into secrets long left behind in his old childhood home that he revisits. I mean, he really was incredible. The mother play equally well, as the Mother From Hell (my words) who has occasional slips of the tongue where you think she may actually be normal. She is not. No one in this movie is normal - no one. Everyone is broken in some way. This movie is incredibly dark - it really was too dark for me, but I can't fault it for that - it did keep my interest and the acting was superb. It did leave me feeling unsettled - I won't soon forget this movie. But I wish I could. Make of that what you will. I do question the retention of memories of trauma, but I am not a mental health professional. However, I obliged for purposes of watching this movie. Oh - and yes, it is a creepy movie. There are fine lines between what a tormented mind can come up with, what really happened and what is happening in the world beyond us. I found this movie had elements of Sybil, Flowers in the Attic and The Changling (the old one with George C. Scott, not the Jolie one which is a different movie of the same name).
This movie's script would of been put to better use as toilet paper and left with the other excrement. If your going to attempt to make a "psychological" thriller at least take a gosh darn psychology course for a day. As for horror the only thing scary about this p.o.s. is the possibility of the writer/director making more movies. If anyone working on this film had any actual real life experiences outside of smelling of their own farts we could of had a semi descent watchable movie, but alas we have this instead. People Do NOT forget traumatic experiences, they are burned into your very soul, when your whole life is based on one you ooze it out of your every pore.
While "Jack Goes Home" may be the first major directorial debut of actor/composer Thomas Dekker, it reads light years from any 'novice' effort on his behalf. The script itself, also written by Dekker, is a harrowing tale of a young magazine editor who finds out that his beloved father has died in a car accident back in his hometown and he must return to set his affairs in order. Along the way, accompanied by his jaded and nihilistic best friend (Daveigh Chase), he begins to unravel some very unsettling family secrets and long-buried skeletons in the old homestead. It's hard to describe the film or give an accurate synopsis because the twists and turns unfold slowly and with such intensity that it would be a crime to deprive the readers of their own journey. Rory Culkin is absolutely magnetic as Jack and it is impossible to look away from him on screen. He is matched by veteran actress Lin Shaye, who takes a sharp divergence from her recent 'Insidious' roles to play Jack's unstable, emotionally- manipulative and completely jaw-dropping inappropriate mother. The supporting performances by Daveigh Chase and Louis Hunter are equally charismatic and effective; Hunter plays the depraved boy-next-door neighbor. With brief roles from Britt Roberson as Jack's fiancée and Nikki Reed as Chase's girlfriend, the cast stays small and intimate, adding to the claustrophobic and smothering emotional tone of the film. The film is shot beautifully, with stunning visuals. And it has several creepy and startling moments, as well as a few genuinely unsettling scares. Most of the horror, however, isn't of the breed one finds in a traditional scary movie. Instead, the horror of "Jack" comes from within; it's in the nightmarish unraveling of a family unit, the internal and external pressures that are putting cracks in Jack's sanity as the film progresses, and the reveals that challenge everything Jack once held dear. The movie is a deeply personal vehicle for Dekker, who suffered childhood abuse as well as lost his beloved father a few years ago, so the moments of emotional truth in the film ring clear as a bell and honest in what could easily be lost to pretense or false sympathies. One can feel the pain of Dekker's loss channeled so beautifully through Culkin and can't look away, a slow-motion autopsy of a grieving soul. All in all, a strong narrative film with bold, unconventional choices and unrelentingly powerful performances from its small indie cast. Highly recommended to those who like psychological drama and horror films that aren't afraid to show their heart instead of gratuitous gore and jump scares.