“Never let your target escape, even if the target is you.“ – Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Joe
What’s good: Great concept and brilliantly acted.
What’s not good: Far too slow between the action scenes.
What happened: Would you kill innocent people in order to save the one you love? Would you be able to rationalize your actions, or let the guilt eat you alive? Most of us are not built to take the life of another regardless of the circumstances. ‘Looper’ shows what happens to one man when he is faced with this impossibly difficult dilemma.
In the future, the mafia uses time travel to get rid of people. They send these undesirables to ‘loopers’ who are specialized assassins that take care of the problem and dispose of the evidence. No matter what happens, these targets should never escape. Joe (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) is not your average killer though. With all of the bloodshed, he spends his free time learning new languages and plans to travel the world. Loopers all fear the day when their contract is over thus closing the loop. Their jobs may be finished, but now, the clock is ticking on their own lives. Joe’s worst nightmares are realized when his contract is up for termination.
Several years later, a much older Joe (Bruce Willis) has finally found peace. Someone special makes it easy to put the violence of his past behind him. Life is perfect until a shadowy character named the Rainmaker arrives. No one knows what he looks like, but, he has a special plan for Joe and others like him. Everything Joe cherishes is taken away and now he is hell bent on killing the one responsible for destroying his life. His fury leads him to commit unspeakable acts. Sara (Emily Blunt) is a tough, independent woman who raises her son Cid (Pierce Gagnon) on their quiet little farm. She’s hiding a secret that may be the key to Joe’s future happiness. Dealing with her will put his morality into question. The present and the future collide as Joe is forced to hunt down and kill his future self before it’s too late.
‘Looper’ is simply an amazing film. The complex storylines added a lot of depth to each scene making the film nearly flawless. Bruce Willis is superb in this movie. The anguish he portrays throughout really illustrates his dilemma. He is a real badass too. His final showdown against the mafia was great. Joseph Gordon-Levitt was also good and definitely has arrived as a lead actor in Hollywood. Emily Blunt’s strong female character was extremely believable. The special effects are sublime. What happens to Paul Dano’s future self was creepy yet so fun to watch. Also, the transition between younger and older Joe was very well done. Make sure to pay close attention to the beginning of the film because important information is revealed. Missing it will make the film more difficult to understand. ‘Looper’ creates a paradox that will surely have audiences discussing it long after they’ve left the theater. There are only a couple of issues that kept it from perfection. First, there were several boring scenes that slowed it to a grinding halt. These moments may have provided important information, but, were flat out dull. Picking up the pace during these times would have made this entertaining film even better. Second, many will be confused about what happened when younger Joe first meets his older counterpart. Many will miss the vague explanation provided and not understand this point. It is hard to explain everything, but this detail should have been clearer.
Bottom Line: The action and layered plot makes ‘Looper’ a definite must see! Just pay close attention to the beginning.
Rating: R Run time: 1 hour, 58 minutes
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