May 11 2021
Drive-In:  Science on Screen: Jacob's Ladder

Drive-In: Science on Screen: Jacob's Ladder

Presented by Frida Cinema, The at Mess Hall at Flight, Tustin

Join us at Tustin’s Mess Hall Market for a truly unique educational drive-in experience: a screening of director Adrian Lyne’s hypnotic 1990 thriller Jacob’s Ladder, followed by a conversation with Dr. Bernard McGrane, Professor of Sociology at Chapman University.

This evening of film and dialogue is presented in partnership with Science on Screen®, an initiative of the Coolidge Corner Theatre, with major support from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

A cerebral and often unsettling blend of character drama, mystery and horror that ultimately transcends its genre trappings to deliver a profound and transcendent cinematic experience, Jacob’s Ladder stars Tim Robbins as the titular Jacob Singer, a Vietnam War veteran Jacob Singer who finds himself plagued by flashbacks and surreal hallucinations upon his return home. Falling apart as the world around him distorts into increasingly disturbing images, Jesse is alternately aided by his girlfriend Jezzie (Elizabeth Peña), ex-wife Sarah (Patricia Kalember), and kindly chiropractor and friend Louis (Danny Aiello), trusted allies whose own intentions Jacob begins to question. Heralded as “a bold, powerful psychological horror film” by Chicago Reader’s Jonathan Rosenbaum, and celebrated by audiences and critics alike upon its release, Jacob’s Ladder is a truly unforgettable film that has found much increased appreciation since its release in 1990.

We are excited to welcome Dr. Bernard McGrane, Professor of Sociology at Chapman University and founder of the meditation course Ancient Wisdom and Modern Madness—Mind, Self and Society in Tibetan Buddhism, to this special educational screening. Dr. McGrane will introduce the film, then engage our audience in a post-film discussion about many of the themes, symbols, and spiritual investigations that are presented throughout Lyne’s provocative work of art.


The Coolidge Corner Theatre’s Science on Screen series has enhanced film and scientific literacy with this popular program, which launched at the Coolidge in 2005. In partnership with the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and its pioneering nationwide film program, the Coolidge has expanded Science on Screen to 96 cinemas nationwide. Throughout the academic year, SoS creatively pairs screenings of classic, cult, science fiction, and documentary films with lively presentations by notable experts from the world of science and technology. Each film is used as a jumping-off point for a speaker to introduce current research or technological advances in a manner that engages popular culture audiences.


Bernard McGrane (Ph.D. New York University) is a Professor of Sociology at Chapman University, Orange, CA. His principle fields of study have been sociology, philosophy, anthropology and intellectual history, and he has poured his passions for writing and teaching into his works Beyond Anthropology, Society and the Other; The Un-TV and the 10 MPH Car: Experiments in Personal Freedom and Everyday Life; This Book is Not Required, An Emotional Survival Manual for Students; and, Watching Television is Not Required. He is also featured in two educational videos: The Ad and the Id: Sex, Death and Subliminal Advertising and The Ad and the Ego: Advertising and Identity. He offers a wide variety of courses: Social Psychology, Sociology of Death and Dying; Sexual Literacy and Society; Mass Communications and Society; Advertising and Society; Honors: Death, Self and Society; Honors: Cosmology Self and Society; Honors: Social Movements of the Sixties. He also offers a number of Meditation courses, notably Ancient Wisdom and Modern Madness—Mind, Self and Society in Tibetan Buddhism, a relatively inexpensive ten-day travel/meditation course to a Tibetan American Meditation center in the Colorado Rockies called Shambhala Mountain Center. Learn more at thank Science on Screen, The Coolidge Corner Theatre, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, and Dr. Bernard McGrane for their collaboration and support of this special event!

Admission Info

Fee per car

Dates & Times

2021/05/11 - 2021/05/11

  • May 11, 2021 at 08:00 pm (Tue)
Location Info

Mess Hall at Flight, Tustin

1705 Flight Way, Tustin, CA 92782