Limitless – Review







by Ken B.

Thank you for taking Limitless, the movie. Side effects may include occasional boredom, beginnings and endings suspiciously similar to that of better movies, wastes of the talent of Bradley Cooper and Robert de Niro, inventive visuals that mysteriously end after the first 45 minutes, and a feeling of mysterious stupidity while watching a movie about intelligence. Stop watching Limitless and burn your TV immediately if you feel this movie is longer than the 104 minutes it actually is.  Limitless is not approved by the FDA or this reviewer, so any financial complaints received due to disappointment are not held eligible.

Come on. You know that was coming.

Even more, I thought it was disproved a long time ago that humans only use 10 – 20% of their brains. I don’t know. It’s just a movie.

Anyway, Limitless is a movie of such supreme mediocrity it’s not even funny. The first few minutes of the movie suggest it may have had more strength going for it then it actually ended up having. It’s not absolutely terrible, but it’s not absolutely great. More or less, this added to an irritation factor surrounding this. Maybe there was potential, maybe there wasn’t. We’ll never know. Bradley Cooper is a good actor, and he adds more to the character of troubled writer Eddie Morra than a script like this probably ever deserved. I’m not exactly sure how they got Robert De Niro in this, either. Now that I think about it, Cooper’s involvement is also puzzling. With a story that clearly can’t handle itself, it’s a wonder they didn’t end up with someone like post-2002 Nicolas Cage to at least add bad acting to a weak screenplay. Or maybe the fact that we had very talented actors in this helped it from becoming completely unwatchable. Limitless is that kind of disappointing movie that could have been better or worse in a hundred different ways. It’s strange that Eddie doesn’t appear to learn anything by the end of the movie. The experimental drug, NZT-48, is something he keeps taking, despite better evidence (his former street drug dealer ex-brother-in-law sold it to him, it had no “name”, and he lied about it being FDA approved). Weirdly enough, he appears surprised that the Russian mob is after him as well. He’s caught up at being a master stocks expert and having millions to play around with. Maybe this is an allegory for human sociology? Or maybe I’m giving it too much credit.

Limitless has no right to sputter figures about four digit IQs when it’s trying to get its own into the three digits. The enjoyable moments are only at the beginning, with the noir style voiceover guiding us through the quasi-twists and turns of its plot. The plot, speaking of which, is riddled with plot holes as it gains speed in its second half, including dead supermodels that he was well aware of mentioned once on a newscast. Once. And there is murder, too. I really could have seen Limitless being as intelligent and charming as it main character was sometimes. Instead it’s half inventive and fun, half perfunctory and dead. Kind of like its main character was the other time.