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Rian Johnson talks Looper, The Terminator, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt becoming Bruce Willis

Jan. 16, 2012by:

JGLHeadBust

We've shared the few scant details known about LOOPER as soon they became available. You know we're excited. So I won't spend time dwelling on that fact (also because thinking about the September 28th release date will just depress me), and instead I'll cut straight to the chase with a plot recap followed by some nice little insights shared by Rian Johnson today:

"A present-day killer (Gordon-Levitt) works for the mob of the future. He, along with other so-called "Loopers", dispose of people sent from the future to eliminate evidence of a crime. When he recognizes one victim (Bruce Willis) as his future self, he hesitates, letting the man escape."

Johnson's thoughts on JGL's performance and "playing" Bruce Willis:

"To bring the premise to life, Gordon-Levitt had to look (and act) like Bruce Willis... and that meant spending three hours a day in the makeup chair.  'That was really scary because you commit to that and there's no real way out of it,' said 'Looper' writer-director Rian Johnson of using practical prosthetics to make one actor look more like the other. 'But the biggest thing is Joe's performance, he's really doing Bruce in a big and daring way, but he strikes a balance between obviously imitating Bruce and also building this organic performance.'"

The TERMINATOR connection:

"If you just tell somebody the plot, you're inevitably telling them the time travel stuff, but the movie actually uses that as a set-up. The best parallel I can draw is to the first 'Terminator' movie where time travel is used to set up this impossible situation between these people and then that situation plays itself out."

Extra Tidbit: Johnson also said in the same article: ""Time travel just never makes sense." Does that ring true to you?

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5:11AM on 01/17/2012

Extra tidbit...

The time travel aspect and it's sensibility...is only as good as the characters you put into it and the sensibility they bring to the situation...

The time travel aspect and it's sensibility...is only as good as the characters you put into it and the sensibility they bring to the situation...

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1:27AM on 01/17/2012
I'm a big fan of Joblo, but if I end up reading another article that I've already read on moviefone a few days earlier I'm gonna have to go over to the darkside. I'm just saying get on the ball or the corporate site is gonna take away all your readers.
I'm a big fan of Joblo, but if I end up reading another article that I've already read on moviefone a few days earlier I'm gonna have to go over to the darkside. I'm just saying get on the ball or the corporate site is gonna take away all your readers.
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7:55PM on 01/16/2012
I like movies that explore the possibilities and dangers of time travel, not movies that just use it as a tool (Superman, Harry Potter 3, Men in Black 3 probably, some of the Star Trek films). If the characters are able to go back in time, than you eliminate all danger and consequence, and I always wonder why the characters can't always just go back in time and stop something bad from happening.
I like movies that explore the possibilities and dangers of time travel, not movies that just use it as a tool (Superman, Harry Potter 3, Men in Black 3 probably, some of the Star Trek films). If the characters are able to go back in time, than you eliminate all danger and consequence, and I always wonder why the characters can't always just go back in time and stop something bad from happening.
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5:38PM on 01/16/2012
Drive was released in September! I don't look at September as bad of a dumping ground month as January. As for the tidbit, involving time travel almost always creates plot holes, though depending how good the powers that be handle the given material, we're hopefully engaged enough to not stop and think, 'Hey, wait a sec..."
Drive was released in September! I don't look at September as bad of a dumping ground month as January. As for the tidbit, involving time travel almost always creates plot holes, though depending how good the powers that be handle the given material, we're hopefully engaged enough to not stop and think, 'Hey, wait a sec..."
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11:27PM on 01/16/2012
The September release date only depresses me because it's so damn far away. SCOTT PILGRIM was released at the end of August and yet I thought it was absolutely awesome and of fantastic quality. Though I've also found sometimes that the "dumping ground" nature of the end of August, September, January, and February can be reflective not of a movie's lack of quality, but rather the studio not quite knowing how to market the movie. Which might also perhaps be a bit of the case here...
The September release date only depresses me because it's so damn far away. SCOTT PILGRIM was released at the end of August and yet I thought it was absolutely awesome and of fantastic quality. Though I've also found sometimes that the "dumping ground" nature of the end of August, September, January, and February can be reflective not of a movie's lack of quality, but rather the studio not quite knowing how to market the movie. Which might also perhaps be a bit of the case here...
5:11PM on 01/16/2012
Excited for the movie.

As for the tidbit, it does when performed well. The show Heroes couldn't execute time travel the way it should have which was one of the many problems the show encountered in its four year run.
Excited for the movie.

As for the tidbit, it does when performed well. The show Heroes couldn't execute time travel the way it should have which was one of the many problems the show encountered in its four year run.
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