Old Movie Review: Looper (2012)

“Looper” was a kind of interesting idea for a film. Time Travel and all the resultant paradoxes it entails has been done quite a bit by Hollywood. This film takes that well-traveled plotline and throws in a few unique twists of its own. I normally don’t like stories where the protagonist is evil, but this film pulled it off quite well.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt plays the younger version of Joe, a Looper for the mob. Basically, a Looper is someone who kills people who are sent back in time by the mob of the future. The catch is that at some point the mob will want to end the contract and “close the loop” by sending the killer’s future self back to be killed. Bruce Willis plays the older version of Joe; the one sent back to be killed. Of course, the future Joe has plans of his own and won’t go easily. But there’s more to the plot than that (although I think that would have made an interesting film in its own right). The writers weave in a theme involving telekinesis and the genesis of a future mob overlord. It’s well done and kind of interesting the way they do it.

If I have a complaint about the movie, it is that I think they tried to do too much. The telekinesis aspect appeared in the beginning of the film, then disappeared for a while because they were developing the story along lines that it need not be in. Then it came back in the last half of the movie where it was a critical element. I think the storyline involving telekinesis would have made a decent film in its own right. The same can be said for the time traveling mob hit man. Putting the two together, though, made the theme of the movie seem a little crowded. Not too much. Just a little. I still enjoyed the film, but by the end, I was thinking it should have been pared down a bit in a few spots.

Other than that, the special effects were good where they were needed, and the acting was excellent, as well. The logic of time travel, of course, still posed its hideously unanswerable objections to the story when you think it through, so … don’t. It’s a time travel movie; don’t overthink it. Just enjoy it.

Overall, I’ll give this movie four out of five stars.

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About atoasttodragons

The author, Matthew D. Ryan, lives in northern New York on the shores of Lake Champlain, one of the largest lakes in the continental United States, famous for the Battle of Plattsburgh and the ever-elusive Lake Champlain Monster, a beastie more commonly referred to as Champy. Matthew has studied philosophy, mathematics, and computer science in the academic world. He has earned a black belt in martial arts.

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