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October 11, 2019

Looper (2012) --- “Hunted By His Future, Haunted By His Past.”

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Hello, Movie Buffs!
     In 2047 time travel has yet to be invented but 30 years later it is. Although it is immediately outlawed, the technology is quickly appropriated by the mob as a way to dispose of anyone that is deemed a threat. They send them back to 2047 to where an assassin known as a Looper quickly carries out the hit and disposes of the body. Joe Simmons (Gordon-Levitt) is one of the most respected Loopers around and each kill earns him a big payday, which he plans to use for his retirement in France. But one day his bosses decide to “close the loop” and send Joe’s future self (Bruce Willis) back in time to be killed, and when young Joe hesitates, old Joe makes his daring escape. As a powerful crime boss in the future sets the underworld ablaze, the two Joes are set on a violent collision course with the fate of a devoted mother (Emily Blunt) and her young son hanging in the balance.

     Directed and written by Rian Johnson (Star Wars: The Last Jedi), Looper is the most original sci-fi film of 2012 that is a refreshing sight and exceeds our expectations of the sci-fi genre. The film boasts a compelling and thought-provoking story with a distinctive style and strong performances that keeps you guessing until the very end. There are a number of cinematic references throughout the film but the most obvious was a nod to the Back to the Future trilogy. But where those films had a more comedic nature, Looper is more of a metaphor about life and one’s soul. It is a mind-blowing film that functions on several levels but at the heart is an artistic puzzle similar to films like Inception (2010) and Source Code (2011). The pace provides a thrilling and sublime experience but ends on a slightly unsettling note by asking one simple question that elevates this film to be a work of art; Can we trust ourselves? Of course, this question opens the door for many different add-ons - like can we trust ourselves to change for the better? To make a better future? To simply do the right thing? - that forces us to re-evaluate ourselves.
     The cast performances were solid and helped carry the story. Bruce Willis (Glass, McClane) brought his usual swag and vigor but the main scene-stealer was Joseph Gordon-Levitt (Snowden) who, thanks to special effects makeup, not only progressively to looked like Willis but also adopted Willis’ mannerisms and nuances that helped Levitt sell his performance. Noah Segan (Knives Out), Emily Blunt (A Quiet Place 2, Mary Poppins Returns), Paul Dano (War & Peace), and Pierce Gagnon (Boss Baby: Back in Business, Scoob) all gave great supporting performances 

     Overall, Looper (2012) is a refreshing and thought-provoking sci-fi film that will keep you entertained until the end with its compelling story and distinctive style. The film functions on several layers but at the heart, it is an artistic puzzle that comes full circle by the end. The performances from the cast were strong, especially from Joseph Gordon-Levitt who really made us believe that he was a younger Bruce Willis.  If you enjoyed films like the Back to the Future trilogy, Inception (2010), and Source Code (2011), then I highly recommend that you check out Looper (2012) if you have not already done so.

Final Vote --- 8 of 10 stars

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Movies Similar
The Adjustment Bureau (2011)
District 9 (2009)
Edge of Tomorrow (2014)
Elysium (2013)
Gemini Man (2019)
i, Robot (2004)
I Am Legend (2007)
Inception (2010)
Limitless (2011)
Minority Report (2002)
Oblivion (2013)
Source Code (2011)

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