Let’s get this straight. Looper is not, as many say, “the Matrix of the 21st Century” it’s “Sliding Doors with Guns.”.
It’s a clever attempt to play with the concept of ‘what might have been’ on a very grand scale (although, interestingly, not, as I was expecting , on a mind boggling scale).
It’s a big movie but it’s not one that, had it failed would bring the studio to its knees and I kind of liked that. Clocking in at $30,000 ain’t really that big a deal.
It’s set in 2047 in a now ragged USA with China having taken ascendancy in the world. I liked the fact that director and writer Rian Johnson (Brick) doesn’t turn it into Blade Runner but adds a few neat sci-fi tricks (like flying motorbikes). Loopers are “disposal men” of their future selves who are sent back from 2077 for, well disposal,. They are called Loopers because the film is all about time loops. 2044’s Loopers are disposed of 30 years hence (and they know it) by themselves hence “Closing the Loop”, but occasionally it goes wrong such as here where Joe (our Hero played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt) has to close the loop on himself (Old Joe played by Bruce Willis). But it all goes Pete Tong and so we now have two Joe’s on the go.
You can skip the next para if you’ve not seen the movie because it’s a spoiler.
Personally, my view is we have three because Cid, the child that young Joe encounters in the second half of the movie is, in my opinion, his younger self. Which makes the sex scene he has with Sara (Emily Blunt – Cid’s Mum) interesting because that means he’s having sex with his own mother.
OK, back to the review.
Young Cid (a remarkable performance by 5 year old Pierce Gagnon) has Telekinetic powers and a temper that makes Linda Blair look merely snippy in The Exorcist.
I could go on but won’t because there’s a lot of detail to consume.
Suffice to say it all pans out cleverly; the various loops are closed in perhaps unexpected ways and we are left with a movie that is clever, well acted, slick and genuinely original.
It’s a definite recommendation. 8/10.