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  1. #1
    Read The Clue Bearcata's Avatar
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    Looper

    Wow, fantastic movie. Definitely A+.

    This review explains it best without revealing too many spoilers like some reviews do and it makes you wonder why bother to see the film at all. I was not planning to see this movie until I heard the buzz that the reviewers loved it. It has a 94% rate posted by reviewers on Rotten Tomatoes and 90% rate posters by regular folks. One of the best things about this film are the performances by Gordon-Levitt and Willis. I could see Gordon-Levitt getting an Oscar nomination but Hollywood rarely rewards acting in a science fiction film. At one or two points I was thinking that this was a remake of the original Terminator film as there are one or two hints to that effect. When you see it you will know what I mean. Overall griping and refreshing film. While violent and rated R there is really no excessive blood spewing all over and really no bad language. The no F bombs and S bombs really did surprise me but again it was nice not to hear. The setting of the film is 2044 in Texas, the Dallas area I think. What is really scary is that if the economic recovery continues to stall as it does I can see it becoming reality as that is what it looks like with all the homeless folks that appear in this film. Rather a gruesome looking future. But the motorcycles are cool and liked how regular cars run on Solar batteries that are on top on the engine hood.



    Gordon-Levitt and Willis take 'Looper' full circle: 'Looper' - latimes.com


    Review: Gordon-Levitt and Willis take 'Looper' full circle
    It's a rush to see Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Bruce Willis portray the same man 30 years apart in the coolly smart, head-spinning sci-fi thriller 'Looper.'



    By Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times Film Critic

    September 27, 2012, 3:45 p.m.

    "Looper" is way inventive but it wears its creativity lightly, like it's no big deal. This is a highflying, super-stylish science-fiction thriller that brings a fresh approach to mind-bending genre material. We're not always sure where this time-travel film is going, but we wouldn't dream of abandoning the ride.

    Written and directed by Rian Johnson and starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Bruce Willis and Emily Blunt, "Looper" demonstrates what a sharp and focused imagination can do when no one fences it in. Johnson gave us a taste of his ability in "Brick," the 2005 Sundance film also starring Gordon-Levitt, but this is that promise fulfilled.

    Because its futuristic framework is so specific and so carefully worked out, "Looper's" world takes a while to outline in words. And it can be a challenge to follow the film's head-spinning narrative twists, such as having Gordon-Levitt and Willis sitting opposite each other in a riveting scene as the same man separated by 30 years of time.

    PHOTOS: Hollywood backlot moments

    Keeping us involved are convincing work by actors who make us buy the unbelievable and Johnson's gift for smart, exhilarating filmmaking. He's a director with a natural flair for visual style (Steve Yedlin is the excellent cinematographer) and an ear for the kind of wised-up dialogue that almost allows Jeff Daniels, irresistible as an exasperated bad guy, to walk away with the picture.

    Perhaps the best thing about "Looper" is the feeling of uncertainty it conveys, the delicious sense that we are in only partially charted territory, that things can and will happen that are deeply unexpected. Despite the plot's unmistakable genre underpinnings, there's a surprising ruthlessness to what takes place here, the sense of a story that has the nerve to play by its own rules.

    "Looper" opens, typically as it turns out, with an arresting, unnerving scene. Gordon-Levitt's Joe is alone in an empty Kansas field, a large tarp carefully laid out in front of him, an imposing weapon known as a blunderbuss in his hands.

    Joe checks his watch and, right on schedule, a bound and hooded man materializes on the tarp. Joe kills him at once, removes the handful of silver ingots taped to the body that is his pay, disposes of the corpse and goes out to party, another day's work safely behind him.

    The year is 2044 and Joe is employed as a looper, a profession that takes some explaining. As Joe's voice-over reveals, time travel will be invented in 2074, then promptly banned. The only people who continue to use it, albeit clandestinely, are big-time organized criminals who, finding body disposal difficult in the future, hit on the idea of sending targets back in time 30 years and having specialized assassins kill them: "Taking out the future's garbage" is how the stoic Joe thinks about it, when he thinks about it at all.

    One of the quirks of the looping profession (likely named to reference time-travel theories involving causal loops) is that it is mandated that, at some point, you will end up unknowingly shooting the future version of yourself, an act called "closing your loop." You will get a big payoff in gold ingots and go off to enjoy the last 30 years of your life.

    Joe's carefully segmented world which involves hanging with best friend and fellow looper Seth (an effective Paul Dano) and a dalliance with party girl Suzie (Piper Perabo), as well as constant use of a potent narcotic administered via eye drops is not fated to last.

    One afternoon Joe has the tarp ready for his next intended victim but everything goes wrong. Not only is the man not tied up, he's not hooded, and Joe immediately recognizes him as the older version of himself. Though Joe knows the dangers involved in not pulling the trigger, in doing what's called "letting your loop run," circumstances conspire to enable old Joe (Willis) to escape.

    It's at this point that "Looper's" plot goes into overdrive. Though they are technically the same man, the difference in age means that Joe (Gordon-Levitt underwent extensive makeup changes to bolster the resemblance to Willis) and his older self have different dreams, different goals for their lives. What it says in the film's ad line "Hunted by your future, haunted by your past" turns out to be the truth.

    "Looper's" plot is way more complicated than you can imagine, and it couldn't hope to succeed without strong acting by all concerned, starting with Gordon-Levitt and a very committed Willis. Also doing potent work are Blunt as the inevitable woman of mystery and compelling child actor Pierce Gagnon as her self-possessed 10-year-old son, Cid. Best of all is Daniels, who gives an electric, eclectic performance as a man from the future fed up with living in the past.

    Because "Looper's" plot is hard to get your head around, the film also counts on its involving future world to keep us in the story. Working with production designer Ed Verreaux and cinematographer Yedlin, Johnson has created an interesting riff on the usual dystopian future by emphasizing elements, such as pervasive homeless encampments, that convincingly play like today's problems run amok.

    One of the memorable lines in Johnson's script has Daniels' gangster-from-the-future Abe casting a disparaging eye on Joe's style of dress and telling him, "The movies you are dressing like are just copying other movies." The best thing about "Looper" is that it doesn't feel like it's copying anything at all.
    "When life gives you lemons, squirt lemon juice in your enemy's eyes."

  2. #2
    Mixing Old Fashioneds PhoneGrrrl's Avatar
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    Re: Looper

    Looper is the kind of movie I'd pay to see more than once in theaters. I nearly went again this past weekend. I was so impressed with the make-up for Joseph Gordon-Levitt. It doesn't look much like he's made up, but you know he doesn't look like himself. He actually could pass for a young Bruce Willis if Bruce Willis was as lean and muscular as he is now back in his Moonlighting days (and had more hair). I'm usually leery of kid actors, but the kid who played Cid was spectacular, especially for the intensity of the role.

    I liked the weird futuristic details--like post-crime wave (what was it called...something like the vagrant wars??) cars are cars from now but outfitted with solar panels for fuel or the nod that Joe liked to dress retro, i.e. early 21st century.

    Oh, it's set in Kansas. But insomuch as the location matters, it could have been set in Texas.

  3. #3
    I love carpet Realitychick's Avatar
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    Re: Looper

    Saw this last weekend... Not a sci-fi person at all and loved this. THought the acting was fantastic.
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  4. #4
    FORT Fogey Florimel's Avatar
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    Re: Looper

    I can't wait for this to come out on DVD. I've also heard good things about it, I love the cast, and I'm a big science fiction fan anyway. Two more I'm looking forward to is Seven Psycopaths and Argo.
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  5. #5
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    Re: Looper

    Argo looks interesting and so does The Rise of the Guardians. I have noticed that there are quite a few very good animated films out this year. ParaNorman was quite fun. Seven Psycopaths looks very like Quenten Tarantino's Pulp Fiction.
    "When life gives you lemons, squirt lemon juice in your enemy's eyes."

  6. #6
    Premium Member burntbrat's Avatar
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    Re: Looper

    I wasn't all that impressed with Looper. It was okay, but not so good that I will want to own the DVD. JGL's makeup/prosthetics/facial expressions freaked me out rather than amazed me. And I found the plot very predictable.
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  7. #7
    PWS
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    Re: Looper

    Wow... thought it was really good. I think the normal JGL is adorable and have since he was on 3rd Rock from the Sun, so not crazy about the faux Bruce Willis look, but the make up was quite convincing. A really good plot and perfect ending in that there couldn't have been another one, much as one might have wanted it.
    My Sig. Other is not a big SF fan, but was talked into this one by me... sadly not a hit...got confused by the time travel a bit I think. I guess you have to be used to the whole paradox issue.

  8. #8
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    Re: Looper

    Quote Originally Posted by PWS View Post
    Wow... thought it was really good. I think the normal JGL is adorable and have since he was on 3rd Rock from the Sun, so not crazy about the faux Bruce Willis look, but the make up was quite convincing. A really good plot and perfect ending in that there couldn't have been another one, much as one might have wanted it.
    My Sig. Other is not a big SF fan, but was talked into this one by me... sadly not a hit...got confused by the time travel a bit I think. I guess you have to be used to the whole paradox issue.
    Huh, confused, but they explained it and it was so simple and elegant.
    "When life gives you lemons, squirt lemon juice in your enemy's eyes."

  9. #9
    PWS
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    Re: Looper

    Simple and elegant if you are used to thinking about it, I think. My Sig. O. is a scientist, but doesn't like science fiction in general because it isn't science "fact"--not good at accepting changes in the physical universe for the sake of a story. So therefore little exposure to all the stories about time travel and the different ways it's explained and issues brought up. I agree, it was elegantly explained... especially liked both the dramatic if sickening first example with the two Seths, and Bruce saying, we'd be here all day playing with straws...

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