“Looper”: Rian Johnson’s (Brick) fascinating science fiction film follows Joseph Gordon-Levitt as a hit man who can handle any job except for the murder of his future self (Bruce Willis). Complex, inventive and thrillingly violent, “Looper” just edged out “Prometheus” as the best sci-fi film of the year, primarily because while it has the same kind mind-bending ideas and aesthetic wholeness, all of its characters have the ability to make intelligent, if self-serving decisions for all the good it does them. For all of its virtues, the most exciting thing about “Looper” is that it’s Johnson’s “Memento.” What comes next can’t be predicted but it is highly anticipated. Also starring Emily Blunt, Noah Segan and Jeff Daniels. Read my full review here.
Special features: Commentary with Johnson, Gordon-Levitt, and Emily Blunt, deleted scenes with commentary, three featurettes, and an animated trailer.
“Cosmopolis”: David Cronenberg’s icy adaptation of Don DeLillo’s novel of the same name follows Robert Pattinson’s soulless billionaire asset manager Eric Parker as he takes a fateful limo ride across New York City to get a haircut. Along the way he ends, loses a fortune, has tons of casual sex, ends his marriage, mourns a musical hero, gets an erotically charged proctology exam, gets a lecture on the inevitability of the future, eats a number of delicious looking meals, contends with smirking anarchist, commits a murder, gets an awful half a haircut, and finally settles up with the personification of deleterious effects of Capitalism (Paul Giamatti). It’s a strange, difficult film but also one of the year’s best. Also starring Samantha Morton, Jay Baruchel, and Kevin Durand. Read my full review here.
Special features: Commentary with Cronenberg, interviews with the cast, and a feature-length making of.
Mario McKellop has written about film on Examiner for the last three years and can be reached directly at firstname.lastname@example.org