A hit man named Joe (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) discovers that his next target is his future self (Bruce Willis) in ‘Looper’, a mind-bending and time-bending thriller from writer-director Rian Johnson.
The film takes place in 2044, when time travel doesn’t exist yet – but thirty years down the line, it will, and it will be controlled by gangsters for one purpose. As Gordon-Levitt explains, “The gangsters use time travel to kill people – they zap their victim back to the past, where a hit man called a Looper, employed by the future gangsters, assassinates them and disposes of the body.”
The trouble for Joe comes when he “lets his loop run,” says Willis. “Letting your loop run means that you’ve shown up to work, your older self has appeared in front of you, and – for whatever reason – you’ve let your older self escape.
It doesn’t happen often, because if all goes correctly, your older self should have a sack over his head and be gagged and tied.
You should just shoot him without knowing what you’re doing. But my character shows up in front of his younger self untied and no sack over his head. I get the drop on him and escape.”
‘Looper’ re-teams Gordon-Levitt with Johnson, who have remained good friends since filming the independent hit ‘Brick’ some years ago. “Rian and I first met nearly ten years ago,” says Gordon-Levitt. “It wasn’t too long after we shot ‘Brick’ that he started telling me about his idea for ‘Looper’. He ended up writing the lead character for me, which is the first time that’s ever happened to me as an actor, so to play that was a great honour.”
“When Joe and I first spoke about ‘Looper’, just after we made ‘Brick’, it was just the premise of the movie,” says the writer-director. “What I liked about the idea was the predicament that Joe finds himself in – he knows what the future holds, and he has to make a moral choice about which way it’s going to go.” Willis’s character is motivated by just how bad things have gone in the future.
If the 2040s are a future where things are run down and everything has gone slightly wrong, the 2070s are marked by the change in control of the organized crime syndicates. “Everything is under the control of a guy called The Rainmaker,” says Willis. “He’s orchestrating mass executions – a reign of terror. But my character knows where the Rainmaker lives in Young Joe’s time. When I go back in time, I go on a mission to track down the Rainmaker and fix the future. Of course, nothing is as easy or as simple as it seems.”
CAST: Bruce Willis, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Emily Blunt, Paul Dano, Noah Segan, Piper Perabo, Jeff Daniels
Director: Rian Johnson