‘Looper’ teaches about good parenting and being selfless

Movie review
By: Frank Miller Special to The News Messenger
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Time-travel movies can make your head spin if you think too hard about all of the plot holes the film has likely glossed over to tell a good story. “Looper” asks that you focus less on the concept of time travel and more on the plight of its characters. The film follows Joe, a Looper, who kills people sent back in time by the mob. Loopers are paid handsomely for their work but the job comes with one catch. To get rid of all evidence of the work they do, Loopers eventually have to kill their future selves. This serves as their retirement and they get to spend the next 30 years however they see fit. Problems arise when Joe’s future self is sent back in time to be killed, only to escape to carry out a secret mission. Young Joe (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) must find old Joe (Bruce Willis) and kill him before the mob catches up and gets rid of both of them. Gordon-Levitt, behind slight prosthetics to make him look like a young Willis, absolutely nails the role and proves once again why he is one of Hollywood’s finest young actors. Director Rian Johnson (“Brick”) deserves credit for making a smartly crafted film that perfectly straddles the line between a blockbuster action movie and indie science fiction. The film takes time to play with thematic elements in between all of the gunfire and chase scenes. It’s a surprisingly sweet story about the importance of good parenting and being selfless. The film has some pacing issues in the second act. As good as he is, Willis doesn’t seem to have enough to do. However, these nitpicks shouldn’t take away from your enjoyment of “Looper.” It’s the kind of film that Hollywood rarely produces these days and should be celebrated for its originality and craftsmanship. Frank Miller is a Sacramento writer. “Looper” Directed by Rian Johnson Starring: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Bruce Willis and Emily Blunt Rating: Four out of five stars