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Old June 19 2013, 02:47 PM   #1
Warped9
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Looper....

Last night I finally got to see this on the movie channel.

It wasn't bad, but it didn't grab me much either. It was okay.

I found it overall depressing with it's basically dystopic future setting. In a way it was something of a western with guns everywhere and a basically nonexistent police presence. Hell what few cops we saw were basically helping the crooks do their work.

It also had strong echoes of past films, most notably Frequency and Bruce Willis' own Twelve Monkeys. It certainly doesn't displace Terminator 2 which I think is still one of the better time travel films. Frequency is another one I quite like.

I can get the future of about forty years or so not looking too much different than today, but it often seems to look cheap and dilapidated in this films. Of course it certainly saves coin in terms of production since you don't have to dress it up much.

It wasn't a bad story, but there was no fun in it either. No genuine humour or much positiveness in it.

In the end I'd rate it a C+.
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Old June 19 2013, 03:26 PM   #2
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Re: Looper....

Well, that was certainly a review about the shiny happy comedic future time travel movie you apparently wanted to see instead, but what did you think about Looper itself?

Judge the film on its own merits or lack thereof, not in comparison to what type of film you would have preferred for it to be.
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Old June 19 2013, 03:32 PM   #3
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Re: Looper....

^^ And that was unnecessarily snark,

I didn't expect a comedy, but I would have liked to see something that was more than just overall depressing.
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Old June 19 2013, 04:19 PM   #4
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Re: Looper....

It has been sitting on my DVR for more than a month, should probably get around to watching it at some point.
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Old June 19 2013, 04:41 PM   #5
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Re: Looper....

Warped9 wrote: View Post
Last night I finally got to see this on the movie channel.

It wasn't bad, but it didn't grab me much either. It was okay.

I found it overall depressing with it's basically dystopic future setting. In a way it was something of a western with guns everywhere and a basically nonexistent police presence. Hell what few cops we saw were basically helping the crooks do their work.

It also had strong echoes of past films, most notably Frequency and Bruce Willis' own Twelve Monkeys. It certainly doesn't displace Terminator 2 which I think is still one of the better time travel films. Frequency is another one I quite like.

I can get the future of about forty years or so not looking too much different than today, but it often seems to look cheap and dilapidated in this films. Of course it certainly saves coin in terms of production since you don't have to dress it up much.

It wasn't a bad story, but there was no fun in it either. No genuine humour or much positiveness in it.

In the end I'd rate it a C+.

I completely agree with your review. I am getting to a point where some of the real dystopian views of the future are too depressing to be entertaining. This was one of the movies where part of me wanted to just turn it off and the other part was engaged enough to see it through until the end.

It wasn't bad, the story was ok, but in the end no humor nothing really positive in the movie.
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Old June 19 2013, 04:55 PM   #6
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Re: Looper....

Terminator 2 was an even more dystopic future, but it had lots going on it it that made it engaging. I think it's become something of a benchmark, at least for me.
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Old June 19 2013, 05:14 PM   #7
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Re: Looper....

Warped9 wrote: View Post
Terminator 2 was an even more dystopic future, but it had lots going on it it that made it engaging. I think it's become something of a benchmark, at least for me.
It had characters that you cared about.
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Old June 19 2013, 05:53 PM   #8
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Re: Looper....

I kind of enjoyed it. I don't know what I'd been expecting going in, but it wasn't this. I was particularly taken with the direction.
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Old June 20 2013, 09:37 AM   #9
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Re: Looper....

The posters made it look like the the Joseph Gordon-Hewitt character was carrying around some kind of bad ass Doom like plasma weapon.

Then I saw a trailer and found it was just a regular shotgun. Completely turned me off from watching the movie.
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Old June 20 2013, 09:52 AM   #10
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Re: Looper....

I love a good dystopic movie. For me though, Looper wasn't it. It seemed like a movie that thought it was a whole lot smarter than it really was. I was excited to see it based on the positive word of mouth, and now I feel embarrassed that I contributed to its box office gross.

I haven't seen Frequency, but 12 Monkeys was a million times more interesting. 20th century Bruce Willis is much better than the paycheck cashing bum we have today. Source Code was much better too, if we want to judge it by its contemporaries.
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Old June 20 2013, 01:01 PM   #11
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Re: Looper....

Frequency had heart. We cared about the characters. It was a little film that seemed to come out of nowhere and did many of the things seen in Looper first and better. Twelve Monkeys was also a lot better.

The bit where the guy's body parts begin to vanish because his younger self is being mutilated---I recognized what was happening right off because I saw it in Frequency first so many years ago only there it didn't feel so graruitous.
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Old June 20 2013, 02:10 PM   #12
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Re: Looper....

GalaxyX wrote: View Post
The posters made it look like the the Joseph Gordon-Hewitt character was carrying around some kind of bad ass Doom like plasma weapon.

Then I saw a trailer and found it was just a regular shotgun. Completely turned me off from watching the movie.
It wasn't even a regular shotgun, a shot gun would have been an IMPROVEMENT, what he had was a blunderbuss.
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Old June 20 2013, 03:37 PM   #13
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Re: Looper....

You have to feel that it's a good thing when Joseph Gordon-Levitt kills himself. Since he is the protagonist, and in the vast majority of movies the protagonist is a vicarious fantasy figure, this is an unexpected and difficult demand on the viewer. There is an up ending, but it's for the kid and no one (except maybe some confused children accidentally watching this film?) identifies with the kid. Many people find it very difficult to empathize with fictional characters they don't identify with.

The movie is not really concerned with a dystopia, nor does it carefully think through the time travel. It should have, and would have been much more effective if it had.
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Old June 20 2013, 03:44 PM   #14
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Re: Looper....

^^ Agreed. This film is basically this is what happens, but there's nothing in it to make you care. The dystopia is just a setting. The presence/acceptance of pretty much everyday casual violence suggests a significant fraying/deterioration of the general social fabric. But then we're not really shown much of anything else beyond the circle most of the characters move in.
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Old June 20 2013, 05:17 PM   #15
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Re: Looper....

Looper is a bad film. What I hate is that it has the rough look of an independent film, and, like a lot of independent films, it also as an air of smartness about it, as if the film feels that it's smart, and that it has the attitude that there are in fact no plot holes at all, because it's so damn smart. Of course, since there's time travel, there are many plot holes. And the film is not nearly as smart as it would like us to believe.

My friend turned it off once she saw how silly JGL looked in his "Bruce Willis" makeup. Oh, and we all know what Willis actually looked like when he was in his thirties (see Mooonlighting, Die Hard) and he wasn't a scrawny pencil.

I mean, Emily Blunt looked much tougher and stronger physically then JGL in this film. When she is chopping wood and he is standing behind her, he actually flinches when she brings the axe over her head.

The subplot (or more like "interesting detail") about the people that move things with their minds should have been dropped, lest they become important to the story, which of course, much to my dread, they did. And the kid at the end reminded me of a cross between the kid in The Omen and Professor X.

My main problem with the film is that it's conceit, a guy that has to kill his future self, could have been somewhat interesting, and I'm convinced that that this germ of an idea started life as a short subject.. and it shouldn't have gone beyond that. There wasn't enough in this film to warrant it being anything more than a short subject.

I found the notion of someone hunting little children to kill them pushing my boundaries of tolerance. It didn't in T2 but here it was too much.

There is one bit that I liked, and it's subtle: the diner scene where Willis and JGL are eating. They are two different actors, but since there's time travel going on and they really shouldn't be together on screen, the director filmed them carefully. He filmed it as if he was using the same actor, employing static split screen shots, and the kind of movements that Zemeckis had to employ when he was using a VistaGlide camera to make a lot of the split-screen work in Back to the Future Part 2 work. The delicacy of these shots, and their little tip of the hat to that film, was very good.

But in the end, it was a laughable film that isn't quite as smart as it thinks it is.
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