Limitless (2011)

IMDB page of the movie : here

Cons :

_Eddie Morra (Bradley Cooper) is supposed to become intelligent through the movie. But he is just… Talking… Talking… Talking… Talking… A real way of dominating your interlocutor to mask his lack of confidence ?
Besides, the Italians say “money comes in the ear and leaves through the mouth”.
Acting in life like a university professor is clearly not a good idea.

Worse, he sometimes seems to behave like a “super-salesman” or a “smooth talker”. Counting on his spiel and his smile to get everything he wants. In real life… It’s not working…

_Eddie Morra lacks of maturity and is not deep enough. Although he wears his little black leather jacket and his striped jacket, he is clearly not a gangster. But rather a newcomer who plays the gangster. Which is confirmed by his haircut : back with a pack of high-shine gel. Conversely, Carl Van Loof (Robert De Niro) comes across as an old businessman. A thousand miles from the hyper-impulsive Eddie Morra (who risks exploding in mid-air at any moment).

_Eddie Morra’s self-importance just ends up being unbearable…

_An ode to urban, ultra-fast life and the opportunistic and arrogant “winner” attitude. While this type of behavior is neither intelligent nor sustainable. “Pride goes before falls” as it is written in the Bible.

_What’s most disturbing is what the film doesn’t say. We are here faced with the myth of the “self-made man”. A successful single person. But in real life, this DOES NOT EXIST.
As Donald Trump say, “In life it’s all about luck.” Eh yes. Was Eddie Morra not lucky enough to have a family who gave him the keys to be educated ? Was he not lucky enough to have a working body ? To have friends ? To live in a promising sector ? Etc… The film says NOTHING about networks, totally, essential, in business. And says NOTHING about the religious beliefs underlying the foundations of these networks. Through these omissions, the film surfs on the lie of the “self-made man” and cannot be seen as educational from a business point of view.

_The different “selves” is a topic that is barely outlined. Shame. This theme is addressed in “Watchmen” (2009), with the plurality of “selves” of the Doctor Manhattan.

_In the end, Eddie Morra almost became a superhero like Ozymandias in “Watchmen” (2009). Which almost seems more honest (and consistent with the American pop culture).

Neutral points :

_The main character is called “Eddie Morra”. A name that resembles to the Japanese playboy “Eddie Sakamura” from the film noir “Rising Sun” (1993). Coincidence?

_ “He needs direct answers” (38min43) is a sentence found in “In Pursuit of Red October” (1990). A film with Sean Connery like in “Rising Sun”…

Cons :

_Behind a classic “loser to winner” scenario, Limitless is above all a film about motivation, self-confidence and the rage to win.

_Bradley Cooper is convincing in the role of the crazy doggy. The contrast with the very down-to-earth Robert De Niro works well on the screen.

_A beautiful scene against the drugs at 55min08.

Conclusion :

A dishonest, big-budget film. Whose philosophy can looks like “Buy a suit, smile and you will succeed”.

Layer Cake (2004) is somewhat in the same vein but is way more pragmatic.

Limitless seems to be available on Youtube : here