15
Apr 11

Film 2Oh!!: The Limits Of Limitless

Do You See + FTPost a comment • 222 views

I’ve seen 76 films this year and have written about 10 of them. Can I catch up?

First a bit of housekeeping: the two films I had already written about this year were both in Narnia week and were:

9: The fantastic Rare Exports (cinema)

10: The more ho hum The Voyage Of The Dawn Treader (cinema)

11: Limitless (cinema)

For a film about someone who gets very smart, Limitless itself is only a B average student. Whilst it is not wholly stupid about the effects a brain enhancing drug could have on society, it picks and chooses its scenarios carefully. It considers the obvious that others may have had access to the drug, that you may wish for more wishes. But its biggest problem is its very title. Because there are lots and lots of limits inherent in the scenario presented in Limitless.

1) The drug will run out.
2) The side effects of the drug provide an effective limit to excessive use.
3) You cannot think your way out of every situation (film does accept this).
4) If everyone else has access to the drug, the status quo potentially returns, just with wittier insults and rejoinders, and more access to super-zooming and supersaturated technicolor.
5) This is mentioned once in the film, but the drug works best on people who are already smart.

This last one makes sense, no amount of steroids will make me a world class athlete now. But then there is a dangling subtext thorughout the entire film .We know a number of people have taken the clear pill, got ill and died. But only one that we are aware of has managed to have the kind of success our hero has. Clearly as our protagonist he has a plan, but for him to do better than nearly everyone else he must have already been really smart. Again the film suggests he may be, that his lack of success is due to a lack of motivation and laziness.

But what profession could be SUPER SMART but SUPER LAZY.

Oh. He’s a writer! Well done Mary Sue!

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