Looper (2012)

Looper Movie Poster

Directed by Rian Johnson

Time travel: genius invention, but tricky. In Looper we see Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Bruce Willis fight each other while they are in fact the same person, yet from different periods in time.

Making science fiction movies about time travel is a tricky job. There usually is a 50/50 chance of getting the good movie you expect. Take for example movies such as Back to the Future and the Terminator. Their counterparts, Back to the Future 2 and the Terminator 3, can be considered unfortunate failures.

What makes this such a good movie then? Director Rian Johnson has managed to manoeuvre past this question. Although Looper is considered to be one of those wicked science fiction movies, there is truly more to it than just infamous time travelling. The time travel has been coated with an intense storyline, well layered characters and finely executed action scenes.

The story takes place in the year 2044. The gap between the rich and the poor has widened even more (good rhyme). Joe, played by Levitt (The Dark Knight Rises), belongs to the upper layer of society. He is a well paid ‘looper’: an assassin who executes criminals that have been sent from the future. Joe lives an empty life though as he is addicted to some kind of drug and he is all alone, only being able to dream about love and going to Paris. When young Joe must kill old Joe from the future, he hesitates, consequently leading to old Joe (Willis) escaping in the past world.

Looper is built on thin ice: any change in the past affects the future. That makes the audience pay attention to even the tiniest details. Yet there haven’t been made any major mistakes that would affect our understanding of the story. Everything fits perfectly well together.

With Gordon-Levitt’s crooked smile and a prosthesis to look more like Willis, Looper offers one of the best cat-and-mouse games in a movie that I have ever seen. It also succeeds in in raising some vital questions we all have in daily life.



7 thoughts on “Looper (2012)

  1. I really loved Looper. I think it’s definitely one of the best films of 2012 and I’m bummed it isn’t getting the recognition it deserves. It’s really too bad that sci-fi tends to get totally overlooked during awards season, especially when the genre produces some of the most complex and thought-provoking films.

    Great review! I agree that time travel is kind of 50/50, but that doesn’t stop me from watching it! It’s one of my favorite sci-fi themes (my husband and I even have matching flux capacitor tattoos) and when it works (like I think it does in Looper), it really works!

    • I guess the sci-fi genre has a kind of DiCaprio-Academy Awards relationship going on with the awards people. LOL. Thanks, what is your favorite sci-fi movie?! Mine is Aliens (1986). 🙂

      • Oh man, I don’t know if I can pick just one favorite, but I’d definitely have to say Back to the Future is up there. I’m really into sci-fi shows, too. There are too many to list, but of course I love Firefly, Battlestar Galactica, X-Files, etc.

  2. Pingback: Star Trek (2009) | Elemental Reviews

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