Monday, April 18, 2011

Movie Review: Bradley Cooper Does Limitless Drugs

Limitless movie poster, property of Relativity Media and Rogue Pictures.

Limitless is a really good movie starring Bradley Cooper as Eddie Mora, a man struggling to get anywhere in his life.  He’s been trying to write a novel for who knows how long, his girlfriend has just left him, and he’s simply not living up to his fullest potential.  In short, he’s a loser.  But when he runs into his ex-brother-in-law Vernon (Johnny Whitworth) his life changes for the better… or does it?  Vernon is a drug dealer selling a new drug called NZT that instead of impairing the user actually enhances them.  You know how we only use a fraction of our brain?  Well, NZT lets people use 100% of it!  The possibilities are, well, limitless…

So with this heightened capacity for learning, a greater memory, and a new sense of drive Eddie finishes his novel in record time, makes lots of money, and soon begins to dabble in the stock market where he meets Carl Van Loon (Robert DeNiro) who hires him on to tackle his big competitor Hank Atwood (Richard Bekins).  All of his success causes his old girlfriend Lindy (Abbie Cornish) to take interest in him again, and with a new career and his girl back, it seems like life couldn’t be better.

However, there are two sides to this coin.  He borrows money from a thug named Gennady (Andrew Howard), who later begins demanding NZT pills as payment.  Vernon is murdered early on, making it more difficult to get a hold of the pills.  And on top of supplying to Gennady and battling with his own addiction, Eddie also finds himself being followed constantly by an unknown man.

I really liked this movie for several reasons.  One, I found the story to be very intriguing and full of action.  Lots of twists and turns!  Two, it’s nice to see Bradley Cooper doing something a little different.  But more than anything,  I liked the movie’s visual style.  The opening is a really cool shot zooming along the streets of New York, and it seems like we are zooming into a photo into a photo into a photo (kind of like navigating the street view of Google Maps).  It also does some cool stuff with the lighting, using warmer and more vibrant colors whenever Eddie is using NZT, and reverting to a grainier, duller look when he is off it.  At times we’ll see multiple Eddies in the same shot, referring to his improved capacity to get things done… very cool.

And the ending?  I loved it!  It’s one of those endings that has you asking questions!  Is he off NZT or is he still a user?  The answer is debatable, and I highly recommend seeing this movie if you haven’t already.

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