The Hot List
October 23, 2012
By Jacob Brunette
In this sci-fi tale directed by Rian Johnson, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, a hitman who kills targets sent back in time by future criminal syndicates, is tasked with hunting down his future self (played by Bruce Willis), who has time-traveled into the past in order to stop a criminal mastermind from coming to power. Despite strong performances from the entire cast, as well as a number of great action scenes, “Looper” fails to realize its full potential. While early on it makes great use of its interesting premise, the movie finishes with a fairly cliché ending that fails to capitalize on its earlier promise.
Music: Grizzly Bear, “Shields”
In its latest album, Grizzly Bear, folk-rockers from Boston, descend from the ethereal nature of their previous album in favor of a more down-to-earth sound. However, they still manage to evoke some kind of otherworldly presence, with scratchy guitars and quiet drums mingling with Grizzly Bear’s trademark vocal harmonies. The result is a record of strange genius, and one of the best albums of the year.
Book: “The Casual Vacancy,” J.K. Rowling
In her first effort after finishing the Harry Potter series, J.K. Rowling transitions from writing about a magical version of England, filled with wondrous creatures and people, to writing about the real version of England, filled with ordinary people and their daily struggles. The story is set in a relatively normal English town, left in shock after a member of the town council unexpectedly dies. While lacking the magic of the Harry Potter series, “The Casual Vacancy” still manages to be an interesting and worthwhile read, but is unlikely to reach the same level of popularity as its predecessor.