This movie’s been on my radar for a long-time, mostly due to my man crush on Joseph Gordon-Levitt and his inability to make bad movies. Add in Bruce Willis, time travel, and incredible action sequences focused on telekinesis… I can’t help but be excited.
Did they manage to pull it off though?
In the future, a crimelord sends people into the past that he wants to disappear, where they are immediately killed by a “looper,” trained killers such as Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s character Joe. At a certain point, they are assigned to kill themselves in the future, “closing the loop.” They are paid handsomely and are allowed to live 30 years happily, until they are then assassinated by their younger self.
Well, when Joe fails to kill his older self (Bruce Willis), things get crazy.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt is fantastic, pulling off an extremely compelling and realistic version of a young Bruce Willis. The prosthetics were perfect and I almost forgot who I was watching while in this movie. It’s not the usual charming Joseph Gordon-Levitt we’ve come to know and love, but rather a haunted and determined killer. His scenes with Willis are the best in the film, especially a conversation taking place in a diner. Their chemistry is incredible but you never forget the tension that things won’t end happily.
The world that they created here is also a fantastic one. It’s set just far enough into the future that things look familiar but like a distorted version of our current day. The visual effects are spectacular, especially as we are introduced to “TKs,” which are individuals with the ability to move objects with their mind (telekinesis). These action scenes are mindblowing.
Emily Blunt and her son Sid (played eerily by young actor Pierce Gagnon) don’t arrive til about halfway through the film but they’re both fantastic. Little Sid is terrific and kind of terrifying at the same time, especially as the movie progresses.
And while it’s often hard to pull off time travel without bringing up big questions about changing the future, they managed to explain it wonderfully, as Willis struggles to remember his life. Some truly wonderful moments here.
What doesn’t work?
Not much. A few of the visuals involving a little floating bike vehicle were a little less-than-desirable but overall the effects were stunning.
This movie is fantastic. Gordon-Levitt hits another home-run after hits like 500 Days of Summer, Inception, Dark Knight Rises, and 50/50, all which I consider 5-star films. Looper is no exception. Stunning visuals, an extremely compelling yet simple story, and a great character film for both Willis and Gordon-Levitt. What are you waiting for?