Time Traveling Sci-Fi Thriller a Must See
LOOPER (2012/IN THEATERS) This creative Sci-Fi thriller, written and directed by Rian Johnson (Brick, The Brothers Bloom), holds a whopping 95% top critics score on Rotten Tomatoes and a 90% from viewers. It felt to me like something of a cross between Blade Runner’s dark ambiance and the Terminator’s theme of time travel aimed at altering the future. The clever concept at the center of Looper also involves time travel, which the main character Joe (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) tells us has been invented but is illegal and used only by mobsters who send their victims back in time to be killed by hired guns (called Loopers). The victims appear hooded with hands cuffed, ready to be shot and disposed of. Joe is a young Looper who is making a good living working for Abe (Jeff Daniels), his mob manager from the future. All seems to be going well when suddenly word gets out that The Rainmaker, a super scary mob boss –also from the future—is systematically closing the loops by sending back the older versions of Loopers with instructions for the young versions to essentially kill themselves —thus closing the loop and erasing the record of their existence. Enter Bruce Willis who appears as the older version of young Joe, ready to be killed. But before young Joe can shoot him, older Joe gets the upper hand and soon is on the run. Or, stated more accurately, older Joe is on a mission to kill the youngster who will become The Rainmaker. You can almost split this movie in thirds. In the first third, we meet Joe and see his hipster Looper life. We also meet Seth (Paul Dano), Joe’s Looper buddy who fails to eliminate his older self and pays the price. Seth warns Joe about the Rainmaker and his own impending fate. The second third of the movie involves learning the full story of older Joe, including where he lived once he closed his loop in an earlier time and why he’s back. In the final third, Emily Blunt appears as Sara, a young mother living in an isolated farmhouse with her son—both young and old Joe will eventually end up here and we’ll roll to the end of the movie. By the time we reach the farmhouse, Abe’s entire organization is after both young Joe and old Joe and there’s no shortage of action and suspense. I recommend this movie to all those out there who enjoy Joseph Gordon-Levitt and his always terrific and nuanced acting, and who especially enjoy Bruce Willis in his Die Hard incarnation. Big fun.