Time travel is an idea adored by every science fiction enthusiast, it has been a popular concept in all kinds of media for a long time now. Time is a fascinating concept itself and the idea of somehow being able to traverse it is even more fascinating. First popularized by H.G.Wells in his novel “The Time Machine” in 1895, now a concept used by almost all form of media. There have been multiple fictional methods of time travel depicted in a wide spectrum, everything ranging from magic to advanced physical theories like blackholes have been used to explain time travel. Not many stories try to convey the possible consequences of time travel, most just end up brushing the very possible effects under the rug. This movie does its best to show the possible consequences of making changes to the past.
Looper is set in the year 2044 in a world quite similar to ours, technological advancements in 2074 have found a way to facilitate time travel. The use of time travel is not elegant or something good at all, it is instead use to coverup crimes of the future. The tracking in 2074 have reached a point where covering up a murder is almost impossible. The future crime bosses utilize time travel to care of their tracking problem, they simply send their targets to the past to be killed and disposed. Loopers are assassins hired by these crime syndicates who take care of the targets sent their way, the targets are bound and blindfolded before being sent back with silver bars on their body as a form of payment. The Looper shoots the target and recovers the silver bars to complete the contract.
The story follows Joe a 25 year old looper that works for the Kansas Crime syndicate played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt. His job is simple, execute the target and recover the silver. He has a pretty wild night life and is also addicted to a type of hallucinogenic. The crime syndicates of the future send the Loopers old self to be executed to hide their connections, these executions are identified with gold bars on the target instead of silver this is referred to as closing the loop. Every looper bides his time waiting for the day to come, Seth a Looper and friend of Joes lets his past self live. This action is frowned upon by the organisations and a manhunt for Seth begins, Joe reluctantly hides Seth in his place but gives him up when his finances are threatend.
The movie does a fantastic job of depicting the consequences to changing past, Seth is captured and used as a beacon for his old self to come back to. The movie shows in its own gruesome way what would happen to the future self if pain is inflicted on the present body. Seth is tortured by first by cutting an address on his arm which develops into scar tissue for his future self then slowly his limbs are severed, these effects appear on the future Seth’s body until he finally dies.
Joe gets to the location for his next target which turns out to be his old self played by Bruce Willis. The only surprising thing for Joe is that his future self is unbound and facing him, Joe fails to kill his old self and returns to his apartment. It is shown that the Joe who returned was successful in closing his loop, he moves on with his life waiting for the day to come. When the day eventually comes Joe is not ready to die and wishes to change the past to avenge his wife, so he returns to the past with the motive to stop “The Rainmaker” a person that overthrows all the crime bosses and forcefully closes the loops. It becomes a battle between Future Joe and the present Joe to save their respective lives.
In my conclusion this is a must watch movie for any science fiction enthusiast with interests in time travel. The cast included Joseph Gordon-Levitt as the primary protagonist, Bruce Willis plays the part of an antagonist, Emily Blunt plays the role of a mother trying to save her son who has psychic powers from the old Joe. Its an amazing movie with an enticing plot, written and directed by Rian Johnson.