Looper, a clever and action-packed heartland version of The Terminator, may not make as much sense as it should, but as the Bruce Willis character says in a diner, “I don’t want to talk about time travel [crap]. If we do, we’ll be here all day, making diagrams with straws.”
Fine. So: Looper isn’t taking itself too seriously, and nor should we. Rian Johnson’s film, set mostly in 2044 Kansas, is loads of fun, making judicious use of special effects (with its rusty hovercycles and ragged slums it looks more like Repo Man than Blade Runner), and it has some cool twists.
Willis and Joseph Gordon-Levitt play the same character at two stages of life. As a man of about 30, Joe is a hired assassin and a junkie who gets high by sprinkling drugs on his eyeballs with a dropper. In 2074, his masters in a massive crime syndicate send him hooded, bound figures that he simply arranges to shoot at a given spot at a given time. Joe owes his job to temporal outsourcing — in 2074, due to tagging techniques, it’s too hard to get rid of dead bodies but Joe is living before that technology exists.
When a friend (Paul Dano) is assigned to kill his own self from 30 years in the future, we learn that these “loopers,” as the hit men are called, are being assigned to “close the loop” by exterminating the future versions of themselves. A mob boss (a quietly scary Jeff Daniels) sent back from the future to monitor these roving assassins convinces Joe that it’s best not to tangle with the crime lords’ idea of how time should play out. Nevertheless, when Willis’s Old Joe, in 2074, manages to alter the circumstances when he is kidnapped and sent back in time for assassination, younger Joe hesitates and allows Old Joe to escape in the cane fields of Kansas.
Here I provide you with a seven word refutation to this speech from HBO’s new show The Newsroom.
“Which way are all the rafts going?”
Related at PJ Lifestyle: Critics Hammer Aaron Sorkin’s Newsroom: ‘So Naive it’s Cynical’
The critics have weighed in on Aaron Sorkin’s new drama, “The Newsroom,” starring Jeff Daniels as a news anchor struggling to put together a successful news program despite the obligatory pressures and obstacles.
The consensus? It’s not Sorkin’s finest work.
Here are the 10 harshest reviews of “Newsroom,” which debuts Sunday on HBO:
1. “‘The Newsroom’ had me contemplating that which is so feared in my industry: changing the channel. And I was watching it on DVD.” — ABC’s Jake Tapper, The New Republic
2. “…an exponentially tedious undertaking for the viewer…” — Hank Stuever, Washington Post
3. “It’s so naive it’s cynical.” — Emily Nussbaum, New Yorker
4. “…it all feels over-overwrought.” — Joanne Ostrow, Denver Post
While Dumb & Dumber is most certainly one of the Farrelly boys’ greatest comedies, we don’t think there were tons of people itching for a sequel. The horrific prequel featuring none of the original actors definitely injected a sour taste in our mouths, plus the recent track-record of Peter and Bobby Farrelly isn’t exactly spectacular. Comedy has evolved since they made a name for themselves in the ’90s, and with each film it seems they’re trying to find a pot of comedic gold that just doesn’t exist anymore for them. Which is why we weren’t over the moon regarding news that Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels were reuniting for a Dumb & Dumber 2, and it’s also why we’re not heartbroken upon hearing that Carrey has now left the project, which was set to shoot this fall.