Looper (film)

2012 film directed by Rian Johnson

Looper is a 2012 film, set in the years 2044 and 2074. When crime syndicates in 2074 want to get rid of someone, the target is sent back in time to 2044 and immediately killed by a hired gunman, a "looper." Joe Simmons, one such looper, discovers that his bosses have sent his own future self back for him to kill.

Directed and written by Rian Johnson.
Hunted by your future. Haunted by your past. (taglines)

Young Joe Simmons

  • [voiceover] Time travel has not yet been invented. But thirty years from now, it will have been. It will be instantly outlawed, used only in secret by only the largest criminal organizations. It's nearly impossible to dispose of a body in the future... I'm told. Tagging techniques, whatnot. So when these criminal organizations in the future need someone gone, they use specialized assassins in our present called "Loopers." And so, my employers in the future nab the target, they zap him back to me - their Looper. He appears, hands tied and head sacked, and I do the necessaries. Collect my silver. So the target has vanished from the future, and I've just disposed of a body that technically does not exist. Clean.
  • [voiceover] There's a reason we're called Loopers. When we sign up for this job, taking out the future's garbage, we also agree to a very specific proviso. Time travel in the future is so illegal that when our employers want to close our contracts, they'll also want to erase any trace of their relationship with us ever existing. So if we're still alive thirty years from now, they'll find our older self, zap him back to us, and we'll kill him like any other job. This is called "closing your loop." You get a golden payday, a handshake, and you get released from your contract. Enjoy the next thirty years. This job doesn't tend to attract the most forward-thinking people.
  • [voiceover, describing Abe] This man is from the future. He was sent back here by the mob, a one-way ticket, to run the Loopers. That's low effort, even for Abe. So to pass the time, he recruited some real muscle, the Gat Men, and now he runs the city. Any other city, that'd be impressive.
  • [to Older Joe] This is my life now. I earned it. You had yours already. So why don't you do what old men do and die?
  • [voiceover] Then I saw it. I saw a mom who would die for her son; a man who would kill for his wife; a boy, angry and alone, laid out in front of him the bad path. I saw it. And the path was a circle, round and round. So I changed it. [kills self]

Older Joe Simmons

  • [to Young Joe] I don't want to talk about time travel because if we start talking about it then we're going to be here all day talking about it, making diagrams with straws.
  • A man from the future runs free long enough, you know, this time travel shit just fries your brain like an egg.
  • Ask yourself: who would I sacrifice for what's mine?
  • Joe! Guess I put the gun in that kid's hand, huh? I guess everything comes back around. [under his breath] Like your goddamn ties.
  • I'm from the future. You should go to China.


  • Kid Blue: [Waving his gun] Know why they call that peashooter of yours a blunderbuss? Because it's impossible to hit anything farther than 15 yards. Impossible to miss anything closer. It's a gun for fuck-up turkeys.


[Abe is talking to Young Joe]
Abe: You know, you were the youngest Looper I ever hired. You looked goddamn ridiculous, they said. [holds hand at neck level; both laugh] Blunderbuss up to here on you. I remember they brought you in, I forget what it was for.
Young Joe: Watch shop.
Abe: Mmm! That's - yeah, you rolled one of our fronts, a watch shop. And they had you, you know. You know, this kid, just like an animal. But you - you looked at me, your hair stuck to half your face, just one eye looking at me. I could see, like seeing it happen on the TV, the bad version of your life. Like a vision, I could see how you'd turn bad. So I changed it. I cleaned you up and put a gun in your hand. I gave you something that was yours.
Young Joe: And I'm grateful for that, Abe.

Older Joe: My memory's cloudy. It's a cloud. Because my memories aren't really memories. They're just one possible eventuality now. And they grow clearer or cloudier as they become more are less likely. But then they get to the present moment, and they're instantly clear again. I can remember what you do after you do it. And it hurts.
Young Joe: So even when we're apart, you can remember what I do after?
Older Joe: Yes, but this is a precise description of a fuzzy mechanism. It's messy.

Sara: This is a Remington 870. One blast could cut you the fuck in half.
Young Joe: In half, yeah, that's telling. You're holding a gun, I say I'm not afraid, so you describe the gun to me. It's not the gun I'm not afraid of.

Cid: Where's Joe?
Sara: He had to go away, baby.


  • Hunted by your future. Haunted by your past.
  • Face your future. Fight your past.


Wikipedia has an article about: