Looper (2012) Review

director: Rian Johnson

writer: Rian Johnson

starring: Bruce Willis, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Emily Blunt and Jeff Daniels

genre:  Action | Sci-fi

released:  September 27, 2012 (Greece & U.S.A.), October 3, 2012 (Germany) 

Possibly one of the most beloved films of last year. Looper was indeed a surprise to us all. Taking us on a glorious trip to a dystopian Earth were poverty is a global issue, mutations are on the rise and time travel is no longer a figment of our imagination, but a reality. It has action that is not only cool, but inventive, characters that are flawed, but human and effects that enhance the movie experience instead of distracting.


In the distant future time travel is possible. Criminal syndicates due to their need of constant body disposal. Use time travel machines to dispose of bodies clean and without a trace. They use the services of hit men in the past called "Looper's" to carry out their dirty work. All Looper's at some point will be themselves on the hit list after 30 years of enjoying their riches and hence closing the loop. 

One Looper named Joe (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) is aware of this policy and is fine with it. His plan for a great life of retirement is ruined when his older self (Bruce Willis) decides to ruin his past in order to fix his own future. Immediately putting themselves at odds and on the run from the mob. Now young Joe has to decide what kind of future he wants and if he likes the man that he's yet to become.


With any film that deals with time travel mumbo jumbo, its due to encounter many pitfalls. Mainly because of the fact that time travel as theory might surely not be possible and also when you play with ideas of timelines, action in the past that affect the future. Some of your story threads, plot points and character actions might fall in vain. And as you might have wondered Looper does encounter these issues.

If you go into detail and start analyzing the rules of time travel in the film and think about them more clearly. You will find out that specific plot points don' stick and much of the logic goes out the door. Because the film is not all despicable, I wont spoil many of the time travel issues. But bare in mind there are also other things excluding the time travel that don't make sense. For example the character Rainmaker's actually reason of becoming a villain, which by actions latter in the film don't make sense. That and a bit more could have been avoided if they actually talked about the time travel, instead of avoiding it by saying "if we talk about it, then we will be talking about it for hours". Point taken. .

The issues the film might have happily don't derail it completely. The film is still very much well complemented by its cast, action and effects. The cast is filled with A-grade acting talent that sell the corrupt and dangerous world. The action and the use of inventive camera work is visually astounding and the effects are seamless and some of the best and most underrated of last year. Lastly the fact that we follow two evil men that not only want to change themselves for the better, but also have genuine reasons to do and fight for it. Is something rare and very admirable to see it play out.


The only reason you might not like this film is if your a quantum physicist or a time travel purist (whatever that means). Taking out the mumbo jumbo of time travel from the equation and letting slide a couple of noticeable plot holes. What you will be in for is a splendid action ride with intriguing characters, beautiful effects, an immersive world and a story that will never make you feel bored of it.

  Personal Rating: 

3.5 Stars.jpg

review by Paul Katsaros

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