Looper is a curious movie, personally I hadn’t even heard of it prior to randomly seeing that it had a 94% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Generally this means you “have to see” a movie at all costs, but in this case I’m not so sure. Looper is a solid film to be sure and maybe has a lot of mass appeal, but it’s still flawed in such a way that it would behoove critics to analyze it. So why the 94%? I think it has enough random arthouse elements tossed in that make ancient people happy is the best I can come up with, but I truly don’t know.
Joseph Gordon Levitt stars as a man in the future… whose job it is to kill people sent from even further in the future. Once a day he walks out to a field and shoots an instantly appearing masked man, then collects his payment from the body and incinerates it. This is a really great premise I have to admit, but they could have done a lot more with it. Eventually “Loopers,” Joe Gordon’s job title, shoot their future selves and are released from service; receiving a much increased salary. Then the movie starts referencing a theoretical future villain who is “closing all the loops,” and this is your first logic hole. If the loops are being closed in the first place doesn’t it mean the system was already set up to do that? It’s Sci Fi, dumb stuff happens who cares.
Bruce Willis is Joe Gordon’s future self, and shockingly enough he doesn’t die within seconds of appearing. At this point they try to track down and kill the future antagonist, whatever shell he might inhabit. You might think this is just another character like it would be in a suspense film, but instead it’s a randomly introduced character some time later. Why? I guess so the film could be more artful? There’s plenty of things they could have done with already extant characters to make the film interesting, but instead you kind of continuously have new characters thrown in the mix up until the last 30 minutes. Each character is individually solid but it makes you wonder, what if they were solidified into just a few extremely interesting characters?
I won’t spoil the necessary elements, but suffice to say the movie is interesting throughout and certainly had a lot of potential to be fantastic. However, it isn’t. It’s a surprisingly good movie for when it was released in the Calendar year, August/September tend to be death knells and have been box office wise. The only extremely remarkable thing about this film is the universal praise and the solid chance that it will receive a Best Picture nomination, another casualty of the 10 selections process (Avengers and Dark Knight Rises will likely also receive them, if only to recognize how much they’re carrying the industry financially). Under-deserved praise, mayhap, but still a worthwhile picture.