See How Looper Should Have Ended

By David Wharton | Updated


Here’s the thing: even our most beloved books or films or games or shows…if you put them under the microscope long enough, you’re almost certainly going to find something that doesn’t quite make sense.

If the story involves time travel, you’ll be lucky if you only find one place where the logic doesn’t stand up to closer scrutiny. If you love the story in question enough, you can generally acknowledge those problems without it destroying your enjoyment of the film itself. Case in point: Rian Johnson’s Looper.

Those deviously brilliant minds on the “How It Should Have Ended” team have vivisected tons of pop culture notables over the years, including Predator, Avatar, Mass Effect 3, and J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek reboot.

Here, they turned their wicked Blade of Truth toward Looper. And they even included a few surprise cameos. Check it out:

It’s hard to argue with the reasoning and “logic” here. The Looper ending makes sense in a general sense though if you start thinking too hard about it, it does start to fall apart some.

After all, Bruce Willis sort of jokes about this even in the movie when it comes to explaining all of the time travel. He essentially skips past it saying they’d be arguing about salt and pepper shakers on the table. So it’s better off to just skip it.

The guys from “How it Should Have Ended” run into something like the same problem when Joseph Gordon Levitt’s character ends up doing nothing, seemingly solving the issue of the Rainmaker. But it also ends with him having the same drug problems too.

Rian Johnson did a good job with the time travel elements in Looper though there were some inconsistencies. They created loops, but those loops weren’t closed. They had different outcomes depending on choices.

Sometimes we would see those effects in real-time (the old version gets screwed up when the young version gets hurt), but it wouldn’t always affect things in the macro.

It’s hard to be super consistent, logical, and “correct” when it comes to time travel. Heck, it might be one of the reasons we haven’t actually created time travel yet. The rules might just not work.

So when we see how Looper should have ended, it’s easy to see why there were still problems even with the new solution.