Director: Ryan Johnson
Cast: Joseph-Gordon Levitt, Bruce Willis, Emily Blunt
In a dystopian future, crime is rampant and criminal organizations have attained a new level of power with the advent of new forms of technology: time-travel is now in their hands, and it is being employed for systematic assassination. Targets are abducted and sent thirty years back in time, where sanctioned 'loopers' are stationed to complete their execution. The film follows the exploits of one such hit-man (Joseph-Gordon Levitt) who realizes that one of his would be victims is in fact his own future self (Bruce Willis).
As undisguisedly absurd as the above attempt at a synopsis may sound; the meandering imagination of Ryan Johnson has returned with such wonderful stories as Brick and The Brothers Bloom, neither of which are entirely sane. So I was actually quite excited when I sat down to watch this new feature. Sadly, I have to report that Looper simply doesn't have the charm that the two aforementioned films had; and what one is left with then, is an absolutely convoluted plot with too many elements. The film simply tries to do too much. When I first read the premise, I thought it was rather clever and that it was something that could be a lot of fun. The film doesn't really try to do anything with it though, it simply uses it as a springboard to introduce newer dimensions to the story.
Perhaps, what annoyed me the most was that somewhere along the line the film began to take itself very seriously. It was then no longer about the joy of being caught up in this in interesting imagined realm and all of its possibilities. The characters were now ambiguous, and had to be taken seriously in a series of events that simply became increasingly more complex, and culminated in an almost bizarre philosophical epiphany.
It is not that the moral themes that were obviously the subject of the film do not deserve attention or aren't interesting; but the zany science-fiction universe in which the drama was to unravel simply made it too ridiculous to engage with. I imagine this might have to do with my own temperament, but I genuinely think that the language of the film was incredibly ill-suited to the kind of story that Johnson seem to be trying to tell.
Anyway, I am sure my disappointment is of a sharper pitch because of how much I liked the director's previous two movies. I doubt you would be as annoyed by it as me, and it can still be quite enjoyable as a boredom-killer or under the influence of intoxication.