Release Date : 12th October, 2012
Time : 118 minutes
Director & Writer : Rian Johnson; Music : Nathan Johnson
Starring : Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Bruce Willis, Emily Blunt, Pierce Gagnon, Jeff Daniels, Noah Segan, Piper Perabo, Qing Xu, Tracie Thoms, Paul Dano, Frank Brennan, Garret Dillahunt
What a delicious, intriguing concept. So logical and neatly tied together. Enacted brilliantly, told with a human touch, creating characters that you care for. And an end which makes you step back and silently applaud.
I’m going to struggle to explain the story without revealing too much. My tendency, to walk in without having seen any trailer or poster, really paying off this time, with everything coming as a fresh revelation. Would recommend, especially if you’re a sci-fi fan and you liked movies like Matrix, to just go and see it without reading any further. If still not sure, read on.
Time travel has been invented thirty years into the future. And has been made strictly illegal, due to the various repercussions , it can have. Strictly illegal. It is also extremely difficult, in that future era, to dispose of any bodies / to kill anyone, since everyone, everything is tagged. So, the mafia of the future, has come up with an innovative idea. They have hired people today, in the present era, known as Loopers, who’s sole job is to be present at a designated time, at a certain place. And kill the person, sent by the future mafia, all handcuffed, with a hood covering the face, and dispose of the body. In return for a lot of money, paid via silver bars. Fascinated ?
There is more. Since the time travel thing is so illegal in the future, thirty years hence, if you were a looper today and lived another thirty years, you could get the mafia into trouble by talking about who all you killed, when etc. So the mafia, eliminating all loose ends, abducts and sends your future self back to the past to you. But this time with gold bars instead of silver. Basically, when you as a Looper, see gold bars instead of silver, you know you are seeing yourself thirty years hence. You kill your future, older self, collect the gold bars and walk away, knowing you have thirty years to live and enjoy with your wealth. This is known as ‘Closing the Loop’.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt is a Looper. Brought up, picked up from the streets by Jeff Daniels, who has been sent from the future to set up and control the entire operation. Joseph wants to walk away one day, go to Europe. And to that end is learning French. However, his life soon turns upside down when he meets Bruce Willis, his older self.
The acting, the humour, the premise and the situation, slowly suck you in. Another angle in the story is that of telekinesis, which is a bit more common in the future, than today. This isn’t one of those where there is action, stunts every minute but rather the story and the characters engage you cerebrally and maintain a vice like grip throughout. The end, as mentioned already, is simply perfect. Joseph, Bruce are as great, performance wise, as you would expect them to be. Emily (loved her in Devil Wears Prada and Adjustment Bureau) is beautiful and achingly accessible at the same time. Pierce is the surprise package, with a role that is so well enacted, it almost freaks you out.
There is a fascination about time travel, that has enchanted generations. This film, doesn’t focus on the technology at all but more on the titillating thought of meeting your older self. It humanizes the otherwise complicated concept, just as ‘Back to The Future’ did years ago. This is a grimmer, more suspenseful version, but in no ways less interesting.