Limitless

 

20th Century Fox

 

Rating: PG-13 / Unrated

 

Reason for the Rating: Thematic material involving a drug, violence including disturbing images, sexuality and language.

 

Plot Summary: A dried-up and slightly depressed writer takes a pill that can make him excel by using 100% of his brain power.

 

PopFam Recommends: Limitless has thrills and excitement, but is also generally amoral and a bit depressing. Not a must-see unless your teenage kids are clamoring to view this one.

 

Limitless is consumerism at its best… or maybe at its worst.

 

Eddie Morra has reached the bottom of his barrel. He suffers from extreme writers block and is unable to write anything. He's lost interest, and lost a bit of hope. To make matters worse, he is dumped by his girlfriend, Lindy. Things couldn't get any lower… or so it seems.

 

After running into his ex-brother-in-law, Vernon, Eddie is offered a pill that could make him more productive. He reluctantly takes it and is amazed by how much he is able to accomplish. He writes better, thinks clearer and is able to clean up his apartment. He needs more. Eddie arrives at Vernon's apartment to ask about getting more but winds up finding Vernon dead, and is put in the middle of a drug chase.

 

Eddie is able to get a hold of the drug and takes it from the apartment unknowingly putting himself in danger both by the men who are now hunting him, and the side effects that the pills cause. He enjoys the feeling though, and before long is taking multiple pills a day. He is able to get everything he thought he wanted: women, money and confidence. He quickly cheats his way into the success he thinks will make him happy, but its short lived. What goes up must come down.

 

Limitless is the story of how getting what you think you wanted is not always what's best for you. In Eddie's world, the desire for more will almost always overrule conscience, especially when drugs are involved. I found this movie exiting at times, and visually stunning, but in the end, I have to say, I was disappointed. I hoped for a bit of redemption, or a somewhat happier ending, but the soulless wheel continues to turn right up until the last picture.

 

In the end, Eddie gets everything he wants, but learns absolutely nothing. He never realizes that he's okay without the help of a drug or that he can be content with his life and not always wanting more. The moment this movie ended, I felt was an uneasy twinge in the pit of my stomach and nothing more.

 

Bonus features on the "unrated extended cut" Blu-ray edition of this film include an alternate ending that offers more hope for Eddie. In it, he realizes the need to get off the drug and to become free from all of the pressures that come along with it. He decides he no longer wants to be controlled by anyone or anything. Perhaps this should have been the ending chosen in the first place? It gives viewers a more satisfying conclusion…a man who realizes the beauty in just being himself. Additional special features are: theatrical and extended cuts of the film, and a few behind-the-scenes featurettes.

 

Let’s Talk About It

Use these questions to spark discussion among family members who are interested in this movie:

 

• If given the opportunity, would you take a pill that would make you smarter?

 

• What could Eddie have done to improve himself instead of taking a drug?

 

• How would you have ended this movie? Why?

 

--RM

 

Note: All product-related graphics in this article are standard publicity/promotional shots and are owned by their respective publisher.

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