What would you do?
The potential to unleash the human brain in a simple, little pill.
Ecstasy without the stupidity you can swallow in one gulp that can change who you are, an enhanced version of what you are. This is what dreams are made of, the American Dream is made of. (The Japanese Dream is made of this as well, but that’s another discussion for another time.)
This movie is based on the book The Dark Fields by Alan Glynn, and it is now known as Limitless. This is book is available for Amazon and Kindle as well. However, this review is not of the book or e-book but rather of the movie.
Bradley Cooper, of the recent remake A-Team fame, stars as Edward “Eddie” Mora, an inspiring author but becomes much more. Abbie Cornish, of Sucker Punch fame, stars as Lindy, his girlfriend. Johnny Whitworth plays Vernon Gant, the brother of his ex-wife, Melissa Gant. Anna Friel stars as Melissa Gant. Robert De Niro stars as Carl Van Loon, a powerful and power-hungry businessman. Tomas Arana plays the Man in the Tan Coat. Richard Bekins stars as Hank Atwood, Carl Van Loon’s rival and the Man in the Tan Coat’s employer. Andrew Howard stars as Gannady, the Russian loan shark. Brian Anthony Wilson plays the Detective throughout this movie.
An unemployed writer, Eddie Mora, is dumped by his girlfriend, Lindy, due to his inability to complete a book. However, when he is introduced to NZT-48, a designer pharmaceutical designed to use 100 percent of the human brain instead of the usual 20 percent, Eddie Mora changes and grants him exceptional ability to calculate and manipulate the world around him. He is granted charisma that he never had. He is granted intelligence that he never had. And with both, he becomes a better man until he is found a suspect of murder of a super model. He is exploited by Carl Van Loon and chased by hit-men who want the stolen NZT soon after. Addiction of NZT and its price bears its ugly head to those who have taken it, and cataclysmic events fall upon each other until the end.
Limitless was a surprisingly captivating movie for the most part. The movie itself simulated the effects of NZT as some shots move extremely quickly. When Lindy took the drug eventually, the movie showed how she calculated her means of escape. This movie reminded me of Scott Pilgrim vs. the World in that the movie was specifically made for the modern public, the modern ADD-driven public. The drama is fast-moving as well — until the middle. When the discussion of the malignant effects of NZT, the movie went into neutral for a while and almost lost my interest.
This movie asks a lot of questions about addiction and the price of superior intellect and stardom. It was Requiem for a Dream minus the bleak outlook on life. This movie was deep without being grandiose about it.
Verdict (Out of 10)
This movie was a solid 9 for me. This movie would be perfect for a good philosophical discussion about society and its needs and wants. In this modern world where intelligence, charisma and speed (e.g., multi-tasking) are of the essence, this movie begs the questions as to the price of these valued personal assets — the physical and social price. Some college students, particularly Ivy League students, can relate to this as they take uppers and Red Bull to keep awake as they seek better grades than their peers. NZT would be much the same and perhaps be abused just as much.
This movie has convinced me to read the book Limitless as well. It leaves a significant impact on the viewer. It is that good.