BRADLEY COOPER ROBERT DENIRO ABBIE CORNISH
The title of this movie is probably the funniest thing about it and of course one of those titles critics just love to pun with. Truth is Limitless has nothing but limits, even with its wanna-be action star Bradley Cooper (The Hangover, The A Team) trying to drive his first solo movie, you limit yourself because well its Bradley Cooper. The concept here is ludicrous; a loser who gets access to this magic pill that gives him “limitless” energy, ambition and smarts. Again even with the pill there are limits, there are always limits. DeNiro tries to play this powerful man telling Cooper’s character don’t mess with me and its really pathetic seeing someone like Cooper push DeNiro around.
Eddie Mora (Cooper) just got dumped by his beautiful girlfriend (Cornish), he has failed to even start writing a novel he has been working on for years, he is on the verge of being evicted and his appearance resembles that of a homeless man. Eddie admits that if life is a freeway, then he missed the on ramp somewhere. Luckily his ex-brother in law gives him a clear pill he promises will change his world. This pill within thirty seconds allows Eddie to use 100% of his brain, and finishes the book in a few hours, plays the stock market to fill his pockets, and proves to his girlfriend he can be ambitious. The pill is a hot commodity in a dangerous world and now Eddie will have to run for his life to protect the small stash of pills and endure the side effects.
It’s an outrageous concept that even if done well would likely still be mediocre. However director Neil Burger (The Illusionist) focuses too much on trying to make Cooper an action star/sex simple (Cooper also produced the film, shocker I know) that everything else falls by the waste side. There is never this rush of adrenaline, or at least the audience is never brought into what Eddie is feeling. The script works in segments where he is on the pill with exciting things happening then the pace dies. Again and again this zipping camera effect down a long street is used; opening credits, to personify Eddie’s energy, etc, it becomes overkill.
The film’s most suspenseful moment is handed to Cornish (Stop-Loss, Bright Star) which involves using a child wearing ice skates as a weapon. Cornish’s character also provides the movies only voice of reason. Certainly the producers hoped the scene where Eddie is forced to drink the blood of a man who just ingested the last of the super pills would capture the audience, and while they do react it’s just a lame gimmick to get people talking. There are no likeable characters here, as the movie opens with Eddie on a ledge, begging us to ponder what drove him to contemplate jumping, by the time we get back to that scene we are ready to push him just end this poorly derived world we have been hauled into.
Final Thought – Cooper is the movie’s biggest limitation.
By: Dustin Chase W.