Writer and director Rian Johnson has recently PISSED OFF a lot of Star Wars fans over his film, Star Wars: The Last Jedi. I'll write about these people later, but today, I'm gonna be talking about another one of Johnson's films, which is better than The Last Jedi, and one of my new favorite movies: Looper.
Now, even though I love the movie, I do want to point out the paradox in the film. Writing a paradox-free time travel script is hard and I'll be writing about the paradox(es) in the film and why Cid STILL becomes the Rainmaker.
So, let's think about this: in the original timeline, Joe kills his older self when the older self is sent back in time.
Joe then moves to Shanghai, lives the next 25 years of his life, magically transforms into Bruce Willis, and gets a wife.
But then, the Rainmaker is introduced, and he intends to close Joe's loop. He kills Joe's wife, and as a result, old Joe changes the timeline, sending himself back in time and knocking out his younger self before he can kill him.
Old Joe then goes on a rampage later in the film, killing children who he believes could grow up to be the Rainmaker. He does all of this to save his wife in the future. And we get one of my favorite scenes in cinematic history.
In this scene, young Joe realizes that the reason Cid grew up to be the Rainmaker was because he was alone, angry, and afraid after old Joe killed his mother. So, young Joe kills himself. And as a result, old Joe vanishes.
But think about it: if young Joe killed himself, then that means that there would be no one to grow up and become old Joe. Therefore, there would be no old Joe that could travel back in time and start killing children and young Joe would have no reason to kill himself if it wasn't for old Joe.
So, that's a new paradox. It's the "Looper paradox": when someone goes back in time and causes their younger self to get killed. It's almost like the Grandfather paradox, but it's just a little bit forward in time.
But here's another paradox, or plot hole, or whatever you want to call it. Remember the original timeline? Where young Joe simply lived his life and grew up to see his wife get killed by the Rainmaker?
Well, why was the Rainmaker created in that timeline? The ending of Looper makes it seem like if old Joe never went back in time to kill Sara (Cid's mom), then Cid would never become the Rainmaker. But before old Joe did ANY time traveling, the Rainmaker killed his wife.
How could old Joe have CAUSED Cid to become the Rainmaker if it was precisely the Rainmaker's actions that made him go back in time?
I mean, you'd assume in the original timeline that Sara raised Cid like a normal child the way she does in the altered timeline. This means that old Joe killing Sara didn't make Cid the Rainmaker. Because in the original timeline, Sara was never killed, and Cid still became the Rainmaker.
Now, I do believe that what I just wrote was indeed a paradox, but from watching movies like Looper, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, and Back to the Future, I know that time travel is a very confusing concept.
Some view it as parallel timelines, and some view it as a loop, or a circle. Round and round. But regardless, Looper is one of my favorite films by Rian Johnson, despite its numerous holes. I think it's slightly better than The Last Jedi, but hell, I liked both movies.
But like I said, time travel is confusing.
So, if all this has been confusing you, watch one of my favorite videos in existence.
I feel like I will study time travel more. And also, I'd just like to say that while Die Hard will always be my favorite Bruce Willis action movie, this movie was one of my favorite Willis performances.
Old Joe is such a well-written character, and it's so nice to see Willis as an antagonist as opposed to his normal action hero roles. And not even just as an antagonist, but as an antagonist with a lot of reason for what he's doing.