Spoilers!!! If you have not seen the film I would not advise you to keep reading. Unless you are going to go back in time and force yourself not to read it later on. That is of course if you have access to a time machine.
So first off, let me just clarify that this is not a slam against the film. I really enjoyed Looper, and consider one of the better films that I have seen at the theater this year. In addition I thought the script was well done, I liked the look of the film and the performances by both JGL and Willis were great.
However I have some plot questions about the ending of the film:
At the film’s conclusion young Joe (JGL) has an epiphany, he sees that Cid becomes the Rainmaker due to being shot by Old Joe (Willis) and witnessing the death of Sara (Blunt). To prevent this series of events from happening Young Joe decides to shoot himself, in the belief that this will prevent Old Joe from shooting Cid and killing Sara and unleashing the Rainmaker.
My first question about this is that earlier in the film it is explained by Old Joe that every experience that Young Joe has is immediately turned into a memory of Old Joe. This is shown to happen a few times in the film. One instance that comes immediately to mind is Old Joe knowing that Cid is on the farm as soon as Young Joe sorts it out.
Now if memories are immediately passed to Old Joe, wouldn’t he then have the same epiphany that Young Joe does? If that is the case then why does Young Joe decide to kill himself? Wouldn’t old Joe already know that he should not kill Sarah as it will create the Rainmaker? That would make young and old Joe’s death unnecessary.
Another thing I have been thinking about is the relationship between Sara and Young Joe. Sara cleans up Young Joe and they are getting pretty hot and heavy, and this relationship obviously did not happen in Old Joe’s timeline previously. Wouldn’t that Young Joe/Sara relationship make it extremely unlikely that he is eventuually going to go to China and marry that other woman. Even if he had not become romantically involved with Sara, simply possessing the knowledge of what goes down in China is going to change what Joe does in the future. If either of those things are true then what is Old Joe’s motivation? Simple revenge?
One more idea I had was why doesn’t young Joe simply blast off his shooting hand with that blunderbuss? Wouldn’t that cause old Joe’s shooting hand to simply disappear as we saw happen earlier in the film with young/old Seth? If that is the case then isn’t young Joe killing himself sort of unnecessary?
Lastly, why does the mob have the young loopers kill the old versions of themselves in the first place? Wouldn’t it make more sense and cause less potential problems to simply have a different looper carry out the task?
Anyhow those are some questions that I have been asking myself since I saw the film. Certainly a great film and one that gets you thinking. Would love to hear some answers to my questions and any other plot questions that other people had with regards to the film.