08
Jan
13

Movie Review: Looper

looper“Oh dear,” said J-Rab as she read the title of this blog post.

“Oh dear,” I agreed because that’s really the best way to sum up how we both felt after watching writer / director Rian Johnson’s third movie, the terminally flawed, futuristic sci-fi romp Looper.

Which is sad because I really, really wanted to love this movie.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt (the film’s protagonist, Joe) is fast becoming one of my favourite actors and even though Bruce Willis (future-Joe) can only play three different characters, he plays those characters so fucking well that I’ll pretty much watch anything he’s in.

I was also intrigued by Rian Johnson’s indie debut, Brick, which was one of the films that first put Gordon-Levitt on the map as a serious actor.

 

 

Throw in a plotline that involves criminal organisations who send the people they want killed back in time to be taken out by specialised assassins called “Loopers” and you’ve got a sure-fire winner right?

Kind of…

My main issue with Looper is that when the plotline is held up to any kind of scrutiny it collapses in on itself so spectacularly that basically nothing in the movie makes any sense whatsoever.

 

 

Simply put, time travel movies either subscribe to the premise that their are a multitude of futures that can exist parallel to one another or there is a singular timeline where actions in the past directly influence actions in the future.

The problem at the core of Looper is that it would have you believe in the singular timeline theory, which makes the whole movie a giant paradox.

Simply put, [MASSIVE SPOILER ALERT AHEAD, SKIP THIS PARAGRAPH IF YOU HAVEN’T SEEN THE MOVIE AND STILL WANT TO] the premise of the film is that Bruce Willis (old Joe) ironically “creates” the Rainmaker when he goes into the past to find and kill him. This of course makes no sense whatsoever because in old Joe’s original timeline he closes his own loop, so who created the Rainmaker?

 

 

But gigantic plot flaws and glaring paradoxes are pretty much par for the course when it comes to time travel movies so putting those aside, how does the movie hold up otherwise?

To be fair, Gordon-Levitt does an admirable job of portraying a younger Bruce Willis and there are times when his Bruce-Willisness is so spot on it’s scary.

BUT, I found the prosthetics they put on his face to make him look more Bruce-Willisish as clumsy and distracting as the very term “Bruce-Willisish”.

At best, he looks like the love-child of the two actors. At worst, he looks like a ventriloquist doll I see in nightmares sometimes.

 

 

As for the man himself, it’s hard to tell if he’s acting or just being Bruce Willis. Either way, his performance was pretty standard Willis fare – nothing we haven’t seen before or won’t see again.

The film’s third act, most of which takes place on an old farm house owned by Sara Rollins (Emily Blunt) where she lives with her five year old son Cid (Pierce Gagnon) was by far the best part of the film for me and the surprise performances by Blunt and especially Gagnon were one of this film’s saving graces.

 

 

Maybe you will be able to overlook the gigantic paradoxes, multitude of plot holes, Gordon-Levitt’s creepy make-up and the flaccid, goofball performances of Jeff Daniels (Joe’s boss), Paul Dano (Joe’s irritating-as-fuck friend) and Noah Segan (Joe’s comically incompetent arch-nemesis), in which case you’ll probably enjoy the film, but yeah.

That’s a lot of maybes.

Final Verdict: 6/10

-ST


2 Responses to “Movie Review: Looper”


  1. 1 Randolph West
    January 10, 2013 at 7:07 am

    Nah dude. 5/10. I watched it, even after your review, because it couldn’t be that bad. I don’t think it deserves 6.

    And I don’t see why everyone is raving about it either. I had to have the ending explained to me because my head exploded from Jackie Chan up there’s comment.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

CommentLuv badge