Sunday, January 6, 2013

Looper: Your Own Little Paradox

I'm a bit slow at the movie watching game, I know. But still, there are some movies that you see that afterwards you say, "I just gotta tell someone about this."

For me, that includes Rian Johnson's Looper.

I have this thing with paradoxes, especially time paradoxes. They're the strangest thing because even if you do understand them they'll never make perfect sense. This is why you don't often see the film industry dipping into paradoxes; the obvious analasys that if your movie makes no sense, you won't make any money. However, it was grand to see that there are such things as exceptions in the film industry. Looper did not disappoint.

The story is set in 2044, a near future where time travel is outlawed. Despite this, a mafia sort of organization has set up a method of murder which involves sending the victim to the past for the killers, known as "loopers," to dispose of them. It's simple and clean.

The problem comes along, however, when the main character Joe (played by Mr. Gordon-Levitt) is to kill his older self (played by none other than Bruce Willis). The older him is hunting down a killer of the future to save his wife, while the younger self is rebelling against his future and protecting said killer. That killer also happens to be a child.

I loved this movie. It made you think; engaged you in the story; and was much like well-known Inception in it's simple complexity. Both were mostly left up to interpretation, but both were thought provoking and interesting on a level that we don't often see today. Looper for me was a fresh take on the paradoxes of time travel and what kind of characters and stories come from that.

Speaking of characters, Joe was a great, all-around character who you can't help but like. Despite some of the outright dumb decisions he can make, he's just you're average joe (excuse my pun) doing his job. It's how he acts while he's reacting to the situations he's thrown into that really make you like him. And how he's (even in the future) always seeking a way to solve things and doing his what he can to get his life back in order. All of the character's are great and I honestly can say that I can remember them all (okay, maybe not exactly, but I remember them). Rian Johnson said in an interview he wanted a character driven time travel movie, and by god did he get what he wanted.

The soundtrack was an excellent backdrop to the movie, and the odd sounds and bits that the director's cousin Nathaniel Johnson implemented were phenominal with the strange film here. Things picked up when needed and flowed great, but the way in which he manipulated the music with odd tunings or objects which were not instruments combined with the classic instruments you would expect seals the deal here. I'll be picking this soundtrack up for sure.

The end could be a disappointment for some (like the friend I saw the film with), but I, for one, enjoyed it. It sealed the story and film, set things right, and all around closed the huge paradox circle the characters had made. (Get it, all around? Circle?) The end is basically a love it or hate it type of ending, so don't have any specific expectations for it or it'll probably disappoint.

All in all, Looper is definitely worth seeing if you're a fan of thought-provoking, action-packed, exciting movies; time travel and/or pradoxes; or if you're still looking for something like Inception.