Review of Looper

looper

My job sucks. Long hours, tedious work and low pay. I cannot wait for the year 2044 to roll by. When that magical date arrives I can quit my dull office life and become a Looper. These mob assassins have it pretty easy. All you have to do is turn up at a location, wait for a tied up person to materialize and blast them with a Blunderbuss. One second of work and in exchange you get paid loads of silver bars. Who are the victims that appear from thin air you may be wondering? They are folks from the year 2074, who have crossed the mob. In the future time travel exists and the gangsters of that era have decided to dispose of bodies by teleporting their prisoners to the past. Sounds like a needlessly complicated way of destroying evidence. Why hire hitmen when you could just teleport people into an ancient volcano instead?

OVERVIEW

Joe is a Looper who is saving up for retirement. The floor safe, in his apartment, houses a pension’s worth of stockpiled silver that he plans to spend in his later years. Joe’s dream, for when he leaves the Looper business, is to move to China. There he can find a nice Asian waifu and indulge in all the drugs he desires. His narcotic of choice is an addictive eye drop. Gross! I hate applying eye drops. When it comes to illegal substances I’ll stick to snorting powder and injecting myself, thank you very much. Anyways, enough about my hobbies. Let’s get back to discussing the movie. Early in the film, Joe finds himself in a pickle when the target he has been hired to kill manages to escape his clutches. The mob is unlikely to forgive this blunder so, in order to avoid punishment, he’ll have to make amends by tracking down said fugitive.

Unfortunately for Joe, the guy he is pursuing turns out to be his future self. Outsmarting someone who is more experienced (and knows what you are thinking) is not going to be easy. Thankfully, he has a clue as to where the older Joe may be headed. Inspired by the Terminator, old Joe realizes that child murder is a great way of resolving life’s problems. Seriously, give that a try next time a toddler starts kicking your seat on the bus. I guarantee that shooting them is more effective than moaning at their parents. Anyway… if Old Joe can kill the boy, who eventually grows up to become the boss who ordered his execution, history will be rewritten. Thus the stage is set. Young Joe heads to an isolated farm, where a single mother and her creepy kid reside. He’ll have to protect the family from his older self, whilst also evading the gangsters who are hot on his heels.

VERDICT

My rating for Looper is four stars. It’s a movie that I can highly recommend, providing that you are able to turn off your brain. In my case that wasn’t a problem, as I have already revealed that I enjoy dulling my mind with copious amounts of cocaine. Looper is a very entertaining movie, but it does have a fair number of plot holes. That’s to be expected, as it was written by the hack who butchered Star Wars. In defense of Rian Johnson, time travel stories do require a suspension of disbelief. They just don’t work otherwise, due to all the paradoxes. For a science fiction tale I was surprised by how contemporary the setting is. The year 2044 resembles modern times, aside from the existence of hover bikes. Some humans have also developed telekinesis by then, although the ability is only strong enough to levitate small coins.

Quibbles about some aspects of the story aside, Looper is an excellent movie. I didn’t spot a weak performance throughout the two hours it lasted. The supporting cast includes the likes of Emily Blunt and Jeff Daniels. Young Pierce Gagnon deserves a mention too, for being a rare example of a child actor that doesn’t suck. Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Bruce Willis did a good job of playing the two versions of Joe. I don’t think they look alike at all, but thanks to makeup and JGL mimicking Willis’ mannerisms, I was able to buy that they were the same person. Willis is often accused of phoning in performances, but that wasn’t noticeable in this film. He acquitted himself well enough during the brief scenes were his character suffered anguish. If you have a Netflix subscription, Looper is worth checking out. You would be loopy to miss it.

27 thoughts on “Review of Looper

    • A lot of people hate Willis’ acting, but I didn’t mind his performance in this film. Maybe he could have put more effort, but he was a playing a jaded guy so it wasn’t too noticeable. The character of Joe was an interesting one. I found things that I both sympathized and disliked about both versions.

  1. Turning off my brain is never a problem. Probably why most of my review are so kind unless they press a button :D.
    Also I can see why I couldn’t do drugs needles and eye drops no thank you. I guess I would just be your normal pill popper if I ever felt the urge to be addicted to something like that… Tangent wow.
    This does look like a fun watch. Time travel shows are always a bit interesting to me since I like seeing the different ways they deal with the paradox of traveling.

    • Most of my reviews are positive too. I guess I have low standards? Haha. Seriously though, if I don’t enjoy something I stop watching it. Unless I complete a show/movie I cannot give it a review, which is why most of my posts end with me giving a rating of three stars or higher.

    • That’s a good idea to be honest. People who don’t nitpick minor things tend to have more fun. Sometimes being a reviewer can ruin the enjoyment of a film, as you watch making a checklist of cons that you can mention in a post.

      • The trick of balancing it. “X is bad and may affect others enjoyment, but is it affecting mine?” Plot holes are a good one for that because some viewers will get really frustrated with them but they don’t necessarily have to ruin enjoyment for everyone

  2. Yeah, there are certainly some things about Looper that don’t make a lick of sense. The concept is creative, yet it’s applied very inconsistently. Nonetheless, I posit it’s light years ahead of its contemporaries. The 2010s has been a dismal decade for science fiction, and Looper manages to escape the era’s worst trapping by actually having a sense of fun with its concept rather than endlessly piling on the angst.

    • I enjoyed Looper. Some of it’s ideas don’t hold up to scrutiny, but then again I suppose if they addressed some of those issues the mob in this film would run a smooth operation and there wouldn’t be a story to tell. This decade has been kind of serious in terms of filmmaking. I guess world events had caused that mindset to foster. Marvel is probably popular, as their films have offered science-fantasy tales that know how to have fun.

  3. “Why hire hitmen when you could just teleport people into an ancient volcano instead?”
    I was thinking teleporting them in front of a T-rex, but that makes more sense too. Either way, cheaper.

    And I don’t understand why anyone would want to be addicted to eye drops. Seconding that comment about it being gross.

    • Drugs are expensive. I would probably waste a lot of money administering eye drops, as it’s hard to resist the urge to blink. Feeding people to a T-Rex sounds like a good plan. The danger is that they would leave human remains, which would be discovered later on. That could end up changing history in unexpected ways.

  4. Hello The Otaku Judge,

    This (Looper) is one of those movies that I should have already seen, back when I saw the trailer it looked worth seeing, but I have never gotten around to watching it.

    I sometimes see the DVD at work and remind myself that I need to see this one day.

    Thank you for sharing your review and also reminding me that I still need to see this. 😀

    -John Jr

    • I was interested in this movie, back when it came out, too. Never got round to watching it though, as I rarely go to the cinema. In the end I forgot about it, until the film popped up on Netflix. To my surprise Looper is pretty old. Came out in 2012. My, how time flies.

      • Hello The Otaku Judge,

        I rarely go to the movie theater now-a-days as well, and there are a variety of things that I wanted to see that I forgot about too.

        2012, wow, I did not realize that it was that old; time goes by fast.

        Thank you for replying,
        -John Jr

  5. wow , thats a heck of a paradox , managing that kind of time paradox is quite a fuss .
    tbh, i dont want to kill my future self , so imma keep the job of looper aside for now .
    have a nice day 🙂
    p.s :i dont even have to switch off my brain because emily is in it….

    • Emily looks gorgeous in this movie. Killing oneself cannot be easy, which is something that some of the characters struggled to do in this movie. I’m not sure why the mob didn’t just organize for different Loopers to kill those targets, rather than themselves.

      • not sure why the mob didn’t just organize for different Loopers to kill those targets, rather than themselves.

        –yeah right ? maybe because if the mob didnt recruit the same person to kill their respective selves then the film wouldnt exist ; and if the film didnt exist , emily blunt wouldnt be in it ….😅

  6. Looper is a great movie 🙂 I can’t turn off my brain (it’s a problem) and still liked the movie 😂😂 Than again my turned on brain isn’t all that great 😂Glad you enjoyed it, too 😀
    You do make a good point though, throwing people in a volcano would be much easier than sending them back to the future 😂😂

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