Looper, an elegant take on time travel

Looper

Directed by: Rian Johnson

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

I will have to admit there might have been a chance that this movie could have been really bad, the whole time travel plot points could have gotten to confusing and really have brought the whole movie down. Instead the movie turned out to be way better than expected and instead of diving to deep into the time travel aspects, they just kinda say that explaining it would take to long. I had a lot going on this film and had it placed on my most anticipated films of the year. Being the third film by Rian Johnson it has to be his best, though Brick really is a pretty good neo-noir film, the film presents a nice atmosphere in both Joe’s social life and the job that he lives with. Once Bruce Willis shows up it all turns south and the really story took shape and what Emily Blunts role finally becomes more clear. The similarities between Brick and Looper is the editing, many of the close-up and other establishing shots resemble his first film. The action may not be the most extrodinary but it does make for a more fun film and really is much cleaner and more focused than any Transformers or recent action films.

A hired gun from the future discovers that his greatest adversary is himself in this twisting sci-fi mindbender starring Bruce Willis and Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and directed by Rian Johnson (Brick, The Brothers Bloom). In the year 2047 time travel has yet to be invented. Thirty years later, however, it has. Though immediately outlawed, time-travel technology is quickly appropriated by the mob, and used to cleanly dispose of anyone deemed a threat. The process is simple: When the mob wants someone to disappear, they simply send them back to the year 2047, where an assassin known as a “looper” quickly carries out the hit, and disposes of the body. Joe Simmons (Gordon-Levitt) is one of the most respected loopers around. Each kill earns him a big payday, and he’s got big plans to retire to France. Then, one day, as Joe patiently awaits the appearance of his next target near the edge of a remote corn field, he’s shocked to come face-to-face with his future self (Bruce Willis). When the younger Joe hesitates, the older Joe makes a daring escape. Now, in order to avoid the wrath of his underworld boss (Jeff Daniels), young Joe must “close the loop” and kill his older counterpart. Meanwhile, the revelation that a powerful crime boss in the future has set the underworld ablaze pits the two Joes on a violent collision course, with the fate of a devoted mother (Emily Blunt) and her young son hanging in the balance.

The most stand out point in the film is performances by both Bruce Willis and Joseph Gordon-Levitt. They may not look a like, before make-up but afterwards it does resemble Bruce Willis more than before, but really makes them close together is their mannerisms. Joseph Gordon-Levitt managed to pull off all of Willis’s mannerisms perfectly and it made the movie more real and the performances more in tune. What I took away from the movie is that you can’t change the past and that you must live for the future and the ending really shows this off in a brilliant way, I can’t explain it but I totally didn’t see it coming which is always a good thing since it catches you off guard. With Emily Blunts role it shows a more human side to Joe and really gives him more dimensions than he had before.

I highly recommend this movie to anyone who is looking for a good time, I wouldn’t try to look to far into the plot holes. It is a tense and gritty thriller and manages to bring new light to the sci-fi genre.

10 out of 10

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The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey back to Middle Earth

I have not been the best of keeping my blog up to date but I have been really busy as of recently. Now after a long break I bring you the Hobbit trailer number two. I am glad to say that the movie is looking as good as I hoped, maybe not on par with The Lord of the Rings trilogy but it does look like a pretty well done adventure movie. With the criticism that the movie has faced due to the 48 frames a second and the bad 3D, which I hope changes in post production and actually turn out to be a new experience in movie, I really hoping for this but who knows how it’s going to turn out. Being a big fan of Lord of the Rings I am eagerly anticipating this movie over all others at the moment and with the truly good footage that I have seen from the trailer I am really hope it turns out as good as I am hoping.

Bilbo Baggins is swept into a quest to reclaim the lost Dwarf Kingdom of Erebor from the fearsome dragon Smaug. Approached out of the blue by the wizard Gandalf the Grey, Bilbo finds himself joining a company of thirteen dwarves led by the legendary warrior, Thorin Oakenshield. Their journey will take them into the Wild; through treacherous lands swarming with Goblins and Orcs, deadly Wargs and Giant Spiders, Shapeshifters and Sorcerers. Although their goal lies to the East and the wastelands of the Lonely Mountain first they must escape the goblin tunnels, where Bilbo meets the creature that will change his life forever … Gollum. Here, alone with Gollum, on the shores of an underground lake, the unassuming Bilbo Baggins not only discovers depths of guile and courage that surprise even him, he also gains possession of Gollum’s “precious” ring that holds unexpected and useful qualities … A simple, gold ring that is tied to the fate of all Middle-earth in ways Bilbo cannot begin to know.

Lincoln trailer which looks void of vampires and actually looks good

Up until now I was never really looking forward to Steven Speilberg‘s Lincoln. Sure Daniel Day-Lewis is certainly going to be one fantastic Abe Lincoln, which is a good thing looking at the other movie based on our 16th president that came out this year. After seeing this trailer I know that it is going to be a pretty good movie, maybe a slight like last year’s J.Edger, with another fantastic performance by one of hollywood best actors today. I know for certain that I will be seeing this movie now that I have seen some footage and I’m confident it will likely be an Academy Award nominated movie.

DreamWorks has announced that the film “will focus on the political collision of Lincoln and the powerful men of his cabinet on the road to abolition and the end of the Civil War.”[8] According to Spielberg, Doris Kearns Goodwin‘s entire book about Lincoln’s presidency is “much too big” for a film, and said that the film will focus on the last few months of Lincoln’s life (similar to The Passion of the Christ), the ending of slavery and the Union victory in the Civil War. Spielberg said that “what permanently ended slavery was the very close vote in the House of Representatives over the Thirteenth Amendment – that story I’m excited to tell.” Spielberg plans to show “Lincoln at work, not just Lincoln standing around posing for the history books…arguably the greatest working President in American history doing some of the greatest work for the world.”[9]

Screenwriter Tony Kushner has said that he worked on the script for six years and that he was very interested in “the relationship of Lincoln to the abolitionist left” and that Lincoln’s “incredible ability to finesse very, very treacherous political circumstances and continue to move the country forward, I mean, to lead the country forward in the midst of the most horrendously difficult period in its history, I think, is breathtaking and awe-inspiring.”[10]

In Team of Rivals, Goodwin describes the following episodes of the final months of Lincoln’s life in detail:[11]

The film selection at the Toronto Film Festival always impress me. I am really looking forward to Argo and The Master just because they seem to be one of the more interesting. The Master is hard to decipher I have yet to find out what it is truly about but that will not get in the way of me seeing this film. I am a big fan of Paul Thomas Anderson‘s work, Boogie Nights, Magnolia, and There Will Be Blood, and this movie will be no exception. I really like where Ben Affleck‘s career has gone, he was not always my favorite actor but when it comes to his directing he has made two of the greatest modern crime films and Argo looks to be the one the gets him a nomination for directing( and rightfully so). Outside of Looper the other films on this list I have no real knowledge of but may have to check them out when the time comes to it. The one I am looking forward to the most has to be Looper, it looks like a tense action thriller that makes you think about time travel and all the possibilities that it brings forth. Right now it stands at the top of my list as most anticipated of this fall and if it is as good as I am hoping it may end up being one of my favorites of the year or maybe it will not live up to my expectations and end up being something that disappoints more than anything. With that I will try to stay updated with other films coming out of the Toronto Film Festival and hopefully get to see them if I have time away from school, work, and homework (which hasn’t been much time lately).

Battleship The most Michael Bayish movie not directed by Michael Bay

Battleship

Directed by: Peter Berg

Starring: Taylor Kitsch, Brooklyn Decker, Rihanna, Alexander Skarsgard, Liam Neeson

There is nothing more disappointing than watching one of my favorite actors having to act and try their best in a movie destined for failure and Liam Neeson was one of the them and Battleship was the film. Everything from the get go was a recipe for disaster; actors and actresses who aren’t all that experienced, a terribly written plot that resembles yet another Hasbro franchise, and the fact that it was based of a board game that is the least likely thing to be adapted to the screen. I had no expectations for this movie other than it being a fun time killer and it even failed on those expectations, which is sad since I actually liked Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance.The one thing that I can give it credit for is having some extremely incredible special effects and it seems that the time was taken to actually build an exciting movie but that never came to be. The film suffers so many gapping plot holes and horrible well everything there is not much this movie is going to offer anyone. There was a point in the movie where the aliens fly down to earth, in a way that the Autobots and Decepticons did, and one hits a small satellite and it is completely obliterated but when it comes to encountering an actual warship those aliens are damn near invulnerable to any sort of damage. I could go into more about plot holes but I really don’t intend on making this that long a review so I’ll just stick to that one.

Peter Berg (Hancock) produces and directs Battleship, an epic action-adventure that unfolds across the seas, in the skies and over land as our planet fights for survival against a superior force. Based on Hasbro’s classic naval combat game, Battleship stars Taylor Kitsch as Lt. Alex Hopper, a Naval officer assigned to the USS John Paul Jones; Brooklyn Decker as Sam Shane, a physical therapist and Hopper’s fiancée; Alexander Skarsgård as Hopper’s older brother, Stone, Commanding Officer of the USS Sampson; Rihanna as Petty Officer Raikes, Hopper’s crewmate and a weapons specialist on the USS John Paul Jones; and international superstar Liam Neeson as Hopper and Stone’s superior (and Sam’s father), Admiral Shane.

It seems like this year is not the year for Taylor Kitsch, he had to box office bombs with John Carter (which I actually enjoyed) and Battleship and had a resonible box success with Savages (another I enjoyed). With the exception of Liam Neeson, who I think would have done a better job in the lead role than Kitsch, all the actors where rather wooden, both female characters where so badly acted that I really wish that a more talented actress could have done right by them. This movie is the typical alien invasion movie kinda like a hybrid of Transformers and Independence Day, except in this they don’t kill the aliens with a virus in which the human race defeats a far more advanced race than or own and with better technology (I have nothing against that if done correctly). The most amusing part out of the entire movie is when the main characters use wave movement to track the enemy ships which turn out to be a giant screen in the form of an actual Battleship board game grid, with the actors shouting Eco One One as in E11, I think that this was a fun way of realizing how ridiculous the entire situation is and a very welcome nod to the board game that inspired the movie.

I really wish that the film makers and studio just never have done this movie because it sucks to see movies going down a road like this in which the movie is style over substance, I like a movie that is more of an experience with great characters and story that transports you into a different world. In terms of Battleship it only includes style with absolutely no substance. Sure it is a style that Michael Bay has proven can be successful, he has his movies with a combination of both (The Island and The Rock) but he has mastered movies that are just dumb fun, and on the other hand Battleship proves that it can be unsuccessful as well.

3 out of 10

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