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Grade • A-
DVD • If New Year's Eve is the time to look back and look ahead, then Rian Johnson's "Looper" is the perfect DVD for the date. This trippy science-fiction tale centers on Joe (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), a hitman known as a "looper" who kills mobsters sent to him from the future (where time travel is possible, but illegal and therefore only used by gangsters).
When Joe's victim is a 30-years-older version of himself (played by Bruce Willis), the chase is on as old Joe launches a deadly mission, and young Joe tries to stop old Joe before he does. The diverging time streams lead both to a farmhouse, where live a single mom (Emily Blunt) and a child (Pierce Gagnon) who's not all he appears to be. Johnson ("Brick," "The Brothers Bloom") pens a whip-smart script that sets up its time-travel premise and plays out its complications expertly. Gordon-Levitt gets Willis' trademark mannerisms down perfectly, and Gagnon is a rare discovery.
Extras include deleted scenes, and commentary tracks with Johnson, Gordon-Levitt and Blunt.
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