Saturday, April 21, 2012

They Got My Memo

At least some people are still trying to make interesting science fiction films based on original subject matter.

A spectre is haunting the world

David Cronenberg is a past master at this sort of thing. He has a core audience of dedicated film fans who will watch almost everything he makes, regardless of subject matter. But, when he turns his hand to a sleazy techno thriller about sex, money and power in the 21st century, their cup runneth. The idea of Robert Pattinson's core audience being corrupted by Cronenberg and Don DeLillo's subversive vision gives the entire enterprise a nicely sadistic edge as well.

Mirror, mirror

Rian Johnson is probably best known for his first feature film - a moderately successful independent production called Brick, about an American high school where everybody talks like characters in a Raymond Chandler novel. His second feature film was the stylish but muddled, The Brothers Bloom, about a couple of con men played by Mark Ruffalo and Adrian Brody who set out to trick but eventually end up falling for a dotty English heiress played by Rachael Weisz. I think I am one of about a dozen people who saw that one in a cinema. 

Financial success (or the lack thereof) notwithstanding, somebody clearly likes Johnson's style.

The premise for his latest feature film is a doozy. Joseph Gordon Levitt is scarcely recognisable as a time-travelling assassin - or Looper - who kills people in the past in order to eliminate them from the future. He is living the high life until he is hired to kill someone who has no place in his present: his older self. Bruce Willis plays the older assassin and if this combines the guns and explosions present in the trailer with the quirky sensibility of Johnson's two previous two cinematic outings, we may well be in for a treat.


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