Cath's Review of Looper
One of the most inventive and original sci-fi thrillers I've seen for a while, only losing a star for it's casual and unnecessary misogyny. An almost unrecognisable Joseph Gordon-Levitt (in Bruce Willis style prosthetics) is a 'looper', a sort of future assassin/ cleaner where time travel is possible but the domain of criminal gangs. Things start to go wrong when his future self Bruce Willis is sent back and lots of confusing timey wimey stuff happens! We have a gang of thugs led by Jeff Daniels, thankfully freed from the self righteous ass he is saddled with on The Newsroom. Emily Blunt gets the one decent female role as the mother of a truly creepy kid who may be the key to the mystery.
This is a film that really grips and keeps you guessing and thinking, engaging you viscerally with plenty of action, and mentally with its mind bending plot. I found Gordon-Levitt's appearance very off putting, and remain unconvinced by his star charisma, although he is fine if not particularly emotive.
The one annoyance is the appallingly cliched female roles. There are only 2 real female character: the lovely Piper Perabo is badly wasted as a hard nosed stripper, who gets to flash her boobs and little else, while the always excellent Emily Blunt is chiefly a mother and love interest, although she does get to swing an axe! Having said that, Willis is pretty much The Terminator, Paul Dano is similarly wasted as a whiny annoying idiot! Characterisation is not a real strength, but this is a film of ideas and the concept is pretty great.
A pretty bleak depiction of the near future, dodgy sexual politics and distracting prosthetics, but a very enjoyable and original movie that I was pretty engrossed in once I could get past the 'guys are so cool/fantasy cliched females existing only as adjunct to the males.'