Writer/director Rian Johnson wins over critics with Looper, a time-traveling sci-fi thriller with brains. Joseph Gordon-Levitt plays a hired killer set to assassinate a future version of himself, played by Bruce Willis. What the press is saying:
- Looper is "way inventive but it wears its creativity lightly, like it's no big deal. This is a highflying, super-stylish science-fiction thriller that brings a fresh approach to mind-bending genre material," writes Kenneth Turan in the Los Angeles Times. "We're not always sure where this time-travel film is going, but we wouldn't dream of abandoning the ride."
- It's an "obstreperously entertaining, bullet- and attitude-ridden science-fiction pastiche," writes Manohla Dargis in the New York Times. Like other reviewers, she does have one qualm: Gordon-Levitt's "distracting" prosthetic makeover to look more like Willis. "Little here is as initially transfixing as Mr. Gordon-Levitt’s mug."
- At the New York Post, Lou Lumenick puts it simply. "An indie-inflected popcorn movie with major brains, brilliant acting and a highly satisfying payoff, Looper is the first must-see movie of the season."
- But at Slate, Dana Stevens isn't as impressed, calling the film "a maddening near-miss: It posits an impossible but fascinating-to-imagine relationship ... and then throws away nearly all the dramatic potential that relationship offers."