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3.8 out of 5 stars474
3.8 out of 5 stars
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Looper is a rather odd, uneven movie. It is as if the writer/director had a reasonable idea for a time travel tale, and a half formed idea for a telekinesis film, and decided to shove them together.

The basic concept is that Joe, played by Joseph Gordon Leavitt has been recruited by a mafia boss sent backwards in time by 30 years from 2074 to carry out hits on undesirables, also sent back from the future, where it is seemingly impossible to dispose of the bodies. Eventually, as time travel itself is illegal, the hit-men are required to dispose of their older selves, receiving a pay off in the process which will allow them to live in comfort for the next 30 years. The second element of the story is hinted at by the fact that a proportion of the population is mildly telekinetic.
Joe's troubles begin when he fails to kill his older self, played by Bruce Willis.

The movie falls into three acts, firstly establishing the scenario of young Joe's life, secondly, rapidly telling the thirty year story of how he becomes Bruce Willis, and thirdly the event's after Old Joe's return, which also involve single mother, Emily Blunt, and her young son.

The 2044 in which the film is set is not one in which there has been a great deal of progress, other than the invention of levitating motorbikes. If anything it has a retro-feel reminiscent of Terry Gilliam's Brazil.

It is all well played and Gordon-Leavitt and Willis are convincing in establishing younger and older selves with similar mannerisms. It is also, while running, reasonably intriguing, with a genuine sense of uncertainty about the outcome, other than a vague feeling that it isn't going to end well (although Willis's actions mean that it is difficult, within Hollywood movie conventions, to believe that he will be allowed to win out in the end).

It is however, as I said uneven. The lumpiness of the cobbling together of the two elements is added to by the addition of gratuitous scenes which do little to advance the plot -Blunt scarcely credibly inviting young Joe into her bed, and Bruce Willis getting a scene where he fights his way out of a tight corner with a sub-machine gun in each hand, included it seems because that's what Bruce Willis does.

The problem with this film is that with a moment's consideration at the end, the whole edifice falls apart, and the problems can be summed up in to sentences.

1. There is absolutely no need for the main villain to be telekinetic.
2. As soon as the climactic events of the final scene have occurred, it is impossible for them to have occurred.

So, Looper is OK. As a DVD to watch if you've got nothing else to do, it's fine, but it's nothing special.
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on 26 May 2013
The movie takes on some unique aspects. Perhaps the best way to describe the film is that it reminded me of "Terminator" without cyborgs. This is a film that deals with time travel. It addresses some of the paradoxes of time travel, but ignores others. In the near future, time travel is possible and outlawed. As the old saying goes, "If time travel is outlawed, then only outlaws will time travel." Weirdly the outlaws use time travel to dispose of bodies. People are transported to the past where they are shot/killed/ and disposed of by people called Loopers who are well paid in silver.

Something happens to the system as Loopers are rounded up and sent back to be killed by their younger selves. To add to the weird, there suddenly appears mutant humans who have mild amounts of "TK" or telekinesis powers.

I liked the movie as it was a fresh approach to the use of time travel. Decent script. Decent acting. Good ending.

Parental Guide: F-word, no real sex, nudity (Piper Perabo)
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on 12 May 2013
Not the best sci-fi film I've ever seen and certainly not Bruce Willis' finest hour but I suppose it was amusing enough to while away an hour or so. Continuity was a bit awry and the characters overall were not particularly likeable, in fact I didn't really care what happened to any of them. The child, destined to be a future super-freak was quite creepy. It was much like other low grade sci-fi 'thrillers' - doom and gloom, violence and greed topped off with self sacrifice and redemption. Not really recommended.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 16 October 2014
I found this 2012 SF film honest and quite watchable, but nothing more. Below, more of my impressions, with some limited SPOILERS.

Time travel was invented in 2074, but immediately outlawed - as result, only criminals use it. One of those uses is to send people whom criminal bosses want to be rid off in the past, so they are killed there, without leaving any traces in the present... As there is no travelling in the future, no one can return from such a voyage... This film tells basically the story of a hit man who in 2044 "welcomes" such time travelers and once "welcomed", gets rid of their bodies...

This hitman is a very average Joe (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) and in principle his story wouldn't be very interesting if it was not for a twist in the whole story which I will let you discover by yourself. Let's just say that the character played by Bruce Willis will have something to do with this whole thing...

Later, after some tribulations, Joe will meet a young woman named Sara (Emily Blunt), a single mother who struggles to make a living on a rather underperforming farm - and then things will finally get REALLY interesting...

This is not a bad film and I don't regret that I saw it, but it is not really anything very special. Yes, there are some nice twists, some of which I actually didn't see coming and yes, there are some really good scenes showing aspects of time travel which are rarely shown on the screen. But, with the exception of one really drastic and SHOCKING development, don't expect any amazing fireworks. Also, action scenes are so so, with "bad guys" hardly able to hit anything (sigh... what else is new?).

For my personal taste, the one character that really makes this film worth watching is Sara, played perfectly by Emily Blunt, definitely one of the best (and best looking) actresses of recent years. Sara is a complex and not entirely nice, but summa summarum rather attaching person and the calm and low-drama but still heroic back-breaking effort she makes every day to take care of her troubled child, her dilapidated farm and her messy life is something worth watching.

All in all, I am glad that I watched this film, but I am not going to buy the DVD, as it is really a thing to see once.
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on 30 May 2013
I'm generally a Brucie Willis fan but I found this film a huge disappointment.

The film's premise is that people from the future are sent back to the past to be assassinated. Willis plays Gordon-Levitt's future self who is sent back to be killed by himself, if you see what I mean. Levitt hesitates to kill his future self and Willis escapes. Levitt catches up with Willis who then proceeds to tell him about the evil future he lives in and encourages Levitt to break protocol, not kill him and attempt to change that future.

That's the basic story and I won't reveal any spoilers about how it pans out.

It's science fiction and I expect unresolved paradoxes and all the other time-travel discrepancies that only very involved sci-fi films attempt to address, so that doesn't bother me. I can normally set reality and physics aside for the purposes of entertainment. But this just didn't gel all that well for me. The story didn't grip me, the characters didn't appeal and I found my attention wandering long before the end of the film. I can judge this because something that really grips me will be paused if I need to refresh my drink or answer nature's call, but I just let this run throughout.

It came over as a disjointed affair that I found ultimately unsatisfying. I appreciate films are always somewhat subjective and others may disagree but I though this was a poor example of the genre. In some ways the film put me in mind of 'Minority Report', which is an altogether much better film in my opinion.
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VINE VOICEon 3 April 2015
Watchable but not very engaging time travel flick.

Boyh leads are fine, the cinematography is well done but the plot is and should be more engaging given the interesting premise of a hitman forced to kill his future self.

Some action livens up a humourlessband sometimes uneven plot.

Worth watching but quite bland.
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on 5 November 2013
I bought this film without knowing anything about it beforehand. It was a bit confusing to start with but I watched to the end. I enjoyed it, but for me not Bruce's best. The plot involves assassins from the future killing folks in the present. Sounds bizarre but it is surprisingly a watchable film.
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This film is rated 15 - which is amazing to me. There is a fair bit of violence and an implied torture scene is chilling. There is also bad language from the off and simulated drug taking. So anyone with young teenage kids - please be aware!

That said it is a very decent film. The premise is that time travel has been invented but banned. The only people using it are criminals and they use it selectively to get rid of people. The Looper in the title is a person who carries out an execution when the person is sent back from the future. The science fiction is reasonably well thought out and used well but it serves as a backdrop to a human story.

This film works because we see the protagonist go on a journey and end up changed by the result. The mid section of the film drags a bit but the end scene works very well and I am glad I saw it.

I saw the Blue Ray edition which had good sound and very clear visuals, especially in the outdoor scenes.
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on 26 April 2013
Film was ok in the end, but from the trailer I expected more from the story. Won;t spoil it for anyone but film didn't pan out in direction I was expecting it to after the first 30 minutes, which for me was a let down. Action / Stars fine, but lacked the punch needed to be great.
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This has a lot in common with the director’s first film Brick, it also stars John Gordon-Levitt and creates an entire and idiosyncratic world of its own. Although a bigger budget and a different genre allow this film to broaden out its scope with different settings. There is a tight and well thought out script, that packs a hefty punch when it needs to, and treads lightly at other times.

In the future gangsters are making hefty use of time travel to send people back in time for execution. It is just a matter of time before things catch up with our protagonist.

This is the sort of film that actors love to appear in, with decent roles, packed with eccentric and memorable incidents. This is a film that you could easily watch again and again, finding new things to enjoy.
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