Looper is a 2012 science fiction/ action film. The film has a rating of 15 due to language, violence, some sexuality and drug use. Looper has a run time of 119 minutes.
Set in the year 2044, time travel has not yet been invented. However, in 2074 it has. Time travel is illegal and only available on the black market. It’s hard to kill someone and be rid of the evidence in 2074 so when the mob wants rid of someone, they send them back to 2044 where people called ‘Loopers’ are ready and waiting to shoot. They’re paid in silver, strapped to the hooded body waiting to be killed.
Looper Joe loves his life. He has plenty of money and lives exactly how he wants to. When his future self is sent to him to be killed, he hesitates, giving future Joe enough time to escape. All targets must be killed and both Joe and his future self end up running for their lives, both of them wanting different outcomes.
What I thought
Although Looper is a film about time travel, the majority of the film is set in the past (2044). Something I really loved about this film was that the time in which it was set, was not too far ahead of where we are now. The futuristic world is not a million miles away from what we have now and instead of being a world unrecognisable, it pretty much just has some amped up technology and ways of enjoying yourself. The time travel aspect of the film, while a focal point of the plot, kind of takes a back seat. Unlike other time travel films, this one doesn’t spend ages explaining how time travel works, why it works or anything else like it. Looper pretty much says time travel exists and that’s it! It was refreshing to not have to sit through a long and drawn out explanation.
Protagonist Joe is a Looper, a man hired to kill people from the future with no questions asked. His targets are sent to him in a field, covered up from head to toe and a whole load of silver strapped to their backs. Joe is played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt who, I have to say has gotten pretty old looking compared to his days in films like 10 Things I Hate About You. I barely recognised him and would have had to look up who he was if I didn’t already know he was in the film. As Joe, he’s a pretty arrogant and full of himself kind of guy, knowing what he has in life is pretty damn good. He plays and parties hard, knowing he has a stash of silver which will cover anything he needs. Joe was a hard character to like to begin with because he was such an ass. However, things begin to chance when he is faced with killing his future self.
Joe from the future is played by Bruce Willis, who is in his element in this kind of film. We all know Willis is a great actor in action films and this one is no exception. Future Joe is completely different to regular Joe, due to having so much more life experience and knowing how the world really works. I really liked seeing the contrast between two characters who were actually the same. Future Joe, although still a hard ass, has reasons for changing his life, which Joe just cannot begin to understand, not having lived it for himself yet. My boyfriend and I also thought it would be pretty cool to know you’d turn into Bruce Willis when you grow up – it could be worse, couldn’t it?!
As well as the chase between regular and future Joe, there was a pretty strange twist which I wasn’t expecting. Telekinesis plays a large part in this film and future Joe knows that there will be one person who could change everything later on in life. Future Joe’s goal is to stop this person from becoming what he is in the future although there’s a slight problem. It could be one of three and all three are children during 2044. Although the whole telekinesis thing was quite strange, I liked the twist that it brought into the film. It also made the film about so much more than the two Joes.
Two other fantastic characters in Looper are Sara and Cid, played by Emily Blunt and Pierce Gagnon. Sara and Cid live on a farm way out in the middle of nowhere but regular Joe happens across them while on the run. Sara is immediately protective of her and her son, not wanting Joe to have anything to do them. The addition of these two characters bring in that something extra that this film needed to set it aside from other science fiction or action films. They add a bit of normality to the world created, as their life revolves around living on a farm. Sara and Cid also make it so that the scenery throughout the film isn’t always set in the futuristic city.
While Looper was slightly confusing at times, it was extremely enjoyable. There are some great plot twists, a fantastic dialogue and the action scenes you would expect from Bruce Willis. This one will be getting a place in my DVD collection!