Yesterday, I came across a very intriguing article. I consider myself a movie buff of sorts, so an article about the top under-rated movies of the past decade caught my eye. I immediately wrote down all twelve under dogs and have been knocking them off, one by one, since. Last night, I caught the 2011 release, Limitless.
Limitless is smart and exciting from open to close. Imagine having the ability to dream up anything you could ever imagine, and then having the intelligence and will power to do so. Imagine suddenly being smarter than your wildest dreams and being able to focus in the most insane of circumstances. This film introduces the idea of an oral medication that not only enhances your focus ten fold, but also enhances your brain activity to eight times its usual flow. This concept in and of itself is thrilling. The possibilities become endless which lends option after option for director Neil Burger to play with.
Bradley Cooper plays, Eddie Morra who at start of the movie is a struggling writer who faces the threat of eviction, and extensive case of writers block. He is yet to write a single word for a book he's already been paid for, and his deadline looms in the distance. His professional and far more put together, girlfriend gives Eddie the old heave ho and Eddie's life seems as if it cannot get any worse. Until of course, he runs into the brother of his ex-wife. Cornered into small talk and drinks, Morra's ex brother-in-law Vernon unknowingly changes Eddie's life forever. Seeing Morra's struggle and obvious despair, Vernon leaves Eddie an $800 designer drug and the promise of better things to come.
One taste is all it takes for Morra to come running back for more. In a fast paced, smart plot, Morra rapidly becomes involved in murder, big time business, and organized crime. But just like any addict, Morra doesn't know when to stop and finds himself deeper and deeper into trouble with less pills to pull it off.
Bradley Cooper does a phenomenal job transitioning from borderline homeless man, to suave and fresh business man, to sexy and sophisticated state senator candidate. His narration is perfection, and his dry sarcasm brings a touch of humor to a tense film.
My criticisms for this film are few and far between. I think Robert De Niro's character could have been explored much deeper. Then again this could simply be because it is almost a shame to have such a powerful actor playing such a meager role. I also would have changed both female actresses, but that's most likely my personal preferences shining through.
Limitless is definitely a film I would recommend and one that, unfortunately, was vastly overlooked. It's smart and edgy and will have viewers delving into their own imaginations, picturing their lives as if they too were limitless.