The House That Jack Built Meaning Movie & Plot Summary

The film consists of 5 incidents and an epilogue – this allows you to reveal the story measuredly and artistically, to completely immerse yourself in it. In order to better understand the ending, it is worth analyzing each incident.

Incident 1. Jack sees a woman on the side of the road with a broken jack. He offers her all the help and takes her to the blacksmith. Along the way, she begins to speculate that Jack might be a serial killer, detailing how he could have killed her. The woman turns out to be intrusive, impudent, skillfully manipulating – she continually assures Jack that he could not kill her, because he is a weakling and a whiner. Jack stops the car, grabs a broken jack and kills his fellow traveler with a punch to the face. This scene reveals that stereotypes about maniacs and serial killers do not always correspond to the truth. Quite often it turns out that they are the most ordinary, average people.

After this incident, Jack has a conversation with Virge, explaining his philosophy and motives for each of his actions. Through these dialogues and some scenes in the film, we understand that Jack suffers from OCD – he is obsessed with order and is a perfectionist. Jack wanted to be an architect, but became an engineer. He dreams of building his own house and buys land for this.

Incident 2. Jack is spying on a woman, and then introduces himself as a police officer, and then lies again and again until he gains access to the house, promising her an increase in her pension, strangles her and immediately tries to save her. In the end, he still kills her and begins to carefully clean the whole house to hide the traces of the crime – he is disgusted by this mess. He comes back several times to check if everything is clean.

Still not having time to really recover from one attack, Jack sees a policeman and begins to get very nervous. They inspect the house together (Jack again makes sure that everything is clean), and then Jack takes away the corpse, leaving behind a trail of blood, which, in the end, was washed away by the rain – Jack in his conversation with Virge noticed that God himself protects him. Through all their dialogues, similar to a psychotherapy session, one can understand that Jack is a psychopath, and he admits this, learns to express emotions so that he is not revealed ahead of time. In these scenes, the viewer is also shown Jack’s childhood, making it clear how he became that way and showing his first acts of cruelty. Moreover, Jack is convinced that all his deeds will go unpunished. He commits them during an exacerbation and they have a psychotherapeutic, sedative effect on him. He photographs corpses and tries to prove to himself that he is a creator.

Incident 3. Initiates a kill as a hunt. Jack is hunting a mother with two sons. He kills his sons, sets up a picnic scene, and then kills his mother as well, stacking the corpses in the style of nineteenth-century hunting compositions. Jack is convinced that God wanted him to kill people and create these paintings, which is why he made him so aggressive. He thinks over the layout of his house and slowly builds it.

Incident 4. Jack’s love story. His lover, Jacqueline, is a dependent fool. She hysterically tells the policeman that Jack is the killer (he himself told her about it). Jack also confesses to the police. Either he could not bear the burden of responsibility, or he was tired of the soullessness of the world around him and the monster inside himself. The cop thinks they’re both just drunk. Jack kills Jacqueline, although she is desperately trying to escape and find help from her neighbors (no one opens up to her), cuts off her mammary glands, puts one on a police car, along the way talking about gender and whether they are born killers or still become under the influence of society.
Jack leaves all the bodies in the freezer. He again talks about death and art, about their involvement and conjugation. From the next reasoning of Jack and Verge, it can be understood that the dispute is not between different people, but between parts of one person. One part tries to explain motives for the other, to find meaning in their own actions. Jack is a big narcissist, rid of guilt and conscience, if he ever had any. He is convinced that art expresses all those hidden desires that a person cannot realize, that heaven and hell are one.

Incident 5. Jack gathered 5 men and tied them to an iron rack to see if one bullet would go through 5 heads at once. Jack builds a house from the bodies of frozen people. Virge praises his work and calls him into the hole in the house while the cops try to get in.

So, having completed the construction of his house, Jack literally finds the entrance to hell. He descends into it, becoming like Dante. He goes through 9 circles of hell. Virgil leaves him alone, convincing that no one could get to the other side, to heaven, but Jack tries to climb up and falls down.

Jack was convinced that he had to do evil in order to create something, he was looking for an excuse and a logical explanation for his actions, he was convinced that he was not only doing the right thing, but that he was created for this. No matter how Jack tries to prove to himself that he is not a monster, but a creator, he remains a monster, and the judgment on him, if it does not happen during his lifetime, will be carried out after it.

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