Whenever you get one of these brainy sci-fi movies in theaters, you're likely to get a flurry of online stories attempting to deconstruct the film's biggest unanswered questions. We've certainly done it before -- and with Looper finally in theaters, the Web exploded over the weekend with a plethora of posts about the movie and the plot twists it left open to interpretation. The one story we gravitated toward most was over at /Film, where they actually sat down with Looper director Rian Johnson and grilled him on the film's many twists and turns, searching for answers. If you've seen Looper, this post will almost certainly clear up most of your questions, including the first one that popped into our heads once the end credits began to roll.
Note: The following will include spoilers
So, yeah, there are lots of questions to be asked, but our biggest question pertained to the overall concept itself. Essentially, why can't you kill people in the future? Looper is about a contract killer (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) hired by the mob of the future to get rid of the people they send back in time. But why does the mob have to go through the trouble of sending potential victims back in time in the first place? Why can't you kill someone in the future and dispose of the body without getting caught? The film mentions something about a tracking system, but you'd think the mob would've figured a way around that loophole, right?
From the /Film post: "The film briefly mentions that, in the future, tracking technology stops murders from happening. But we explicitly see Joe’s wife murdered in the future. Johnson said this was one of several things he worked out in his head but didn’t put in the movie because it felt superfluous to the story. He instead explained it to us.
“Everybody in the movie has this nano technology tracking in their body and whenever there’s a death, a location tag is sent to the authorities from this tracking material. So they can’t kill people in the future. But if they send them back, that is not triggered.” He continues, “The material is powered off the body’s heat and it has a two year life after the person dies. As for the wife, that was a big mistake made by the mobsters and the reason we see the shot of the village burning is that’s their half-assed attempt to cover it up."
Ah, so the only way to get around the tracking technology is to send the person back in time. You'd think there would still be ways around it (hence the fire), but then we wouldn't have this film... and that wouldn't be a good thing at all. Head over to the /Film pos
t to get answers to some of those other burning questions, like why do we see Bruce Willis' Old Joe live in one scene and die in another, or why is it essential for a Looper to close his own loop? And while we're at it, how come there aren't any female Loopers? (That last question is ours, not theirs.)
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