Directed by Rian Johnson
In 2044, time travel hasn’t been invented, but thirty years in the future it will have been. The government of the future bans time travel, but we all know what happens when the government outlaws something! That’s right, because time travel is illegal for law abiding citizens, only organized criminals have time travel. And because in the future its apparently “impossible” to hide a body, for some reason crime bosses come up with the overly complex, and convoluted idea to send their enemies back in time and space where they will be killed and disposed of by hired guns that the future crime bosses have employed in the past. These hired guns are called Loopers.
Joe, played spectacularly by Joseph Gordon-Leavitt (3rd Rock From the Sun), is one of these mobster clean up men, and life is good. He makes heaps of silver, drives a nice car, indulges in recreational drug use, and is enjoying his life until the day comes when the mob decides to “close the loop” by sending Joe’s future self, played by Bruce Willis, back in time for assassination.
Looper is a great flick to look at, having some of the best production design from the funky-cool blunderbuss weapons the loopers use, to the crappy looking solar power converted cars. The performances, especially Joseph Gordon-Leavitt are convincing, and the story for the most part is entertaining. The flick does bog down at times, but makes up for it with some well thought out, well directed action sequences, and for the most part is a satisfying, smart sci-fi romp.
However Looper plays it pretty fast and loose with the science of time travel, especially with the “time pod” itself which seems more like a time and space trans-mat as it has the ability in the flick to not only zap people through time, but also to multiple locations in space. So this time machine apparently exists 30 years in the future, and can zap people basically anywhere in time and space, why do the gangsters feel the need send their enemies into the past to have them killed? Why not send them into the middle of the ocean, or the far, far future, or the distant past? None of this is adequately explained. And in the same way that nature abhors a vacuum, the universe abhors a time paradox, so the less said about the totally nonsensical, cringe inducing, and paradoxical ending the better.
The 1080p, 2.35:1 high definition transfer however is superb, and the 5.1 channel DTS HD-MA audio nearly blew the roof off my home theatre at times, and that’s always a good thing.
The extras on the blu-ray are few and far between, including deleted scenes, a couple short EPK style featurettes, an animated trailer, and an audio commentary with director Rian Johnson, actors Emily Blunt, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt which is certainly worth a listen.
All in all I suppose its worth a look, if for nothing else than for Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s fantastic performance, but in the end Looper can only get 3 silver bars out of 5.