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"Jack's Back" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 19

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"Jack's Back" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 19

Old 09-27-14, 05:04 PM
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"Jack's Back" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 19





Jack's Back (1988)



Selected by J. Farley



IMDB ENTRY

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These "October Horror Movie Challenge" threads are for the discussion of the films in the 31 FILM SUBSET list.

The plan is for everyone to watch this film on the October day in the thread title, and to start discussing it the morning of the following day.
You may start discussion early if you want, but the preferred plan is for this to be as much of a group exercise as possible, with all of us viewing it "together" and discussing after.

Of course, you are totally encouraged to participate in these threads even if you haven't watched the movie on the designated day.
Even if you haven't watched it in years, or are not participating in the Horror Challenge, please feel free to chime in.



Spoiler tags are unnecessary in here, so if you have yet to see the film BEWARE OF SPOILERS.
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2014 DISCUSSION THREAD | 2014 LIST THREAD


Last edited by Chad; 10-05-14 at 01:48 PM.
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Old 09-28-14, 06:00 AM
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Re: "Jack's Back" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 19

This is a cool little flick and people who've not seen it will enjoy Spader's performance. Saw it at a friend's horror marathon a couple years back. Love this particular poster for obvious reasons.
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Old 10-19-14, 03:13 PM
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Re: "Jack's Back" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 19

Don't care what IMDB says, this ain't horror.
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Old 10-19-14, 10:59 PM
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Re: "Jack's Back" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 19

I really enjoyed this. The song that played under the credits, "Red Harvest," sounded a BIT too much like Peter Gabriel's "Red Rain." I'm surprised that the writers weren't sued. Too bad that this hasn't gotten a disc release since laserdisc--I wouldn't mind adding it to my collection.

As to whether it's horror or not...I don't have a problem calling it a horror film. It's certainly along the same lines as The Dead Zone, and nobody seems to have much of a problem labeling THAT as horror. Of course, the fact that it was written by Stephen King may have a lot to do with its label. It also falls into the giallo category, although that aspect is fairly slight. Still, gialli are sort of a subset of horror, so I don't see the problem labeling Jack's Back as a horror film. Whether it's a horror film or not, it's certainly an enjoyable film.
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Old 10-20-14, 01:25 AM
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Re: "Jack's Back" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 19

I also enjoyed Jack's Back, there's some clever plot devices like how the first 30 minutes seems like a straight movie then suddenly the main character is killed and replaced with his twin. Sometimes it comes across as too gimmick; I'm still not sure how the hero suddenly just knew who the killer was.

Hey, look! It's The Doctor from Star Trek: Voyager!

Although he disappeared backstagefor most of the run time, I thought they broadcast the killer a bit early with the awkwardly out of place urber zealot moral figure.

Originally Posted by rbrown498 View Post
It also falls into the giallo category, although that aspect is fairly slight. Still, gialli are sort of a subset of horror, so I don't see the problem labeling Jack's Back as a horror film...
Jack the Ripper, with his gruesome surgical kills, seems like a good horror basis and I agree Jack's Back fits a lot of giallo conventions.
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Old 10-20-14, 03:30 AM
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Re: "Jack's Back" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 19

Couldn't agree more regarding the giallo comparisons. It's horror in my book, but even if some don't consider it such, The Silence of the Lambs is a past subset pick. I rest my case.

Jack's Back is a personal favorite of mine and one of my most wanted films on Blu-ray. For a copycat killer story, it's handled with considerably more freshness than you'd expect. The stern focus on character is also appreciated. Spader gives a layered double performance, and he has strong chemistry with Cynthia Gibb (huge crush), who brings amazing charm to anything she appears in. Oh, and that opening scene just screams pure 80's bliss. I remember the VHS having really generic cover art that likely didn't do the film any favors on the rental market.

Originally Posted by Undeadcow View Post
Hey, look! It's The Doctor from Star Trek: Voyager!
Considering how recognizable Robert Picardo is, imagine my surprise when, just a few short years ago, I came to realize that he played Eddie Quist in The Howling. No idea how I never noticed it was him, as I've been watching that film since I was a kid.
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Old 10-22-14, 01:08 PM
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Re: "Jack's Back" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 19

I thought this movie was decent. Definitely of its time. James Spader looks so young and thin and Cynthia Gibb is damn delicious. She has a definite natural beauty.

I thought Spader did a good job making both guys seem unique but he didn't go over the top with it.

Decent but nothing special. My rating: *** out of *****
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Old 10-27-14, 05:53 PM
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Re: "Jack's Back" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 19

I remember seeing this on VHS at my local rental store years ago. I was always tempted to rent it as I was intrigued by the story of Jack the Ripper coming back to continue his murders 100 years later. I'm not sure if the VHS synopsis was misleading, or if I just misunderstood what it was about, but I was disappointed to see there was no supernatural Jack the Ripper element to this movie. However, it was a pretty decent flick, Spader does a good job, and I agree with the Giallo elements, POV stalking, murder mystery, plot twists, etc.

This movie was probably overshadowed by Dead Ringers, which came out the same year, where Jeremy Irons plays a pair of twins. A great movie with an amazing performance by Irons, although that's more of a psychological horror movie(Cronenberg).
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Old 10-27-14, 06:42 PM
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Re: "Jack's Back" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 19

Originally Posted by J. Farley View Post
Considering how recognizable Robert Picardo is, imagine my surprise when, just a few short years ago, I came to realize that he played Eddie Quist in The Howling. No idea how I never noticed it was him, as I've been watching that film since I was a kid.
He was in The Howling? I know I've seen that a dozen times yet I never noticed.

This film was fun. Neat to see a young Spader, hot Cynthia Gibb, and 80s style.
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Old 10-27-14, 07:28 PM
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Re: "Jack's Back" Reviews/Discussion - 2014 Horror Challenge: Day 19

I thought this one was all right. I don't think I would buy it, but it's certainly worth a watch. I was very surprised early on that James Spader was getting killed off, and then I was thinking he might be a ghost before I knew for certain he was a twin.
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