LIMITLESS 2: Beyond Limits!
I don’t know about you knuckleheads, but, I’m fascinated by this new cinema trend of not necessarily rebooting something into a new franchise, but rather, spinning the new project off from the original. The new MINORITY REPORT TV show takes place years after the Tom Cruise flick. Shit like that. To me, It feels a bit like trying to do too much fan service. ‘We’re not negating the popular source material, we’re just building out from it. Picard still exist somewhere out there in the multiverse! We swear!’ This is all well and good, but, what tends to happen is that the new project ends up still feeling like a reboot but with ‘not reboot’ disclaimers everywhere. Why did I say that in a Richard Nixon voice? ‘I am not a reboot!’ After watching the LIMITLESS pilot, I still don’t know where it fits in with this new trend.
LIMITLESS stars Jake McDorman as Brian Finch (The only real credit I can give you for him was the adorable short lived MANHATTAN LOVE STORY. Also, He dabbled a little bit with Vine. His cat drools quite a bit. Regardless, McDorman has got the chops). Brian is a ‘past his teenage prime’ twenty something-er who is drifting through his life. His family tolerates his ‘artistic lifestyle’ and has kinda sorta lowered their expectations of him. It all comes down to focus. I know it. It took me 3 days to write this review. FOCUS! Anyway, Brian stumbles across a friend who decides to give him a little creative boost with the assistance of NZT (the smart drug). If you haven’t seen the movie, NZT is a genius making cheat. (A cheat I wish I had.) A pill that magically turns your brain into a superhuman calculating computer. Every bit of information you have ever overheard or slightly paid attention to, is at my disposal. He uses his new found ability to save his father’s life and discover who murdered his friend. Of course, Brian discovers that the people who know about this drug are constantly trying to kill one another to gain possession of it. Which throws you under the spotlight of FBI, the mob and all that ilk. Another problem with the drug, is that it slowly kills whoever takes it. That’s where Bradley Cooper comes in.
In the LIMITLESS movie, Bradley Cooper played Edward Morra. A character, very similar to McDorman’s ‘Brian.’ After dodging the mob and the police and whoever else was trying to kill him, Edward Morra eventually wins the day (with the assistance of NZT) and starts his political aspirations. At the beginning of the LIMITLESS show, you see a strategically placed ‘Re-Elect Edward Morra’ poster. NOT A REBOOT! Edward has figured out a way to use NZT without any of the harmful side effects. (Also, his brain is starting to go down a very LUCY-like path. Check out of Lucy Review here to see what I mean.) A process he is willing to share with Brian, as long as he never tells anyone that Morra has the ability to make NZT safe. Imagine the world that would create? Also, this answers the question of ‘why doesn’t everyone just take NZT?’ Morra seems satisfied enough to have an upgraded Brian running around as long as he (I guess) continues to use his new found intelligence for good? Brian, being the only person the FBI knows of that can safely use NZT, has decided to recruit him for the obvious resource that he is. That’s the nutshell. Smoke em if you got em.
At first I was a little put off by how identical the TV show was to the movie. As I thought about it, I realized it sort of made sense that anyone who uses NZT would be in constant jeopardy in the same ways Edward and Brian have been. That explains why both of their origin stories are very similar. Exceptional and sudden rises up the corporate structure would definitely get the attention of not so nice people. I was also a little put off by how this is yet another show that stars one eccentric genius teaming up with a ‘by the book’ law enforcement agent. ELEMENTARY. BEING HUMAN. CASTLE. That vampire one. That one with the guy who had magical powers. Hey, don’t get me wrong. I love that formula. It’s my jam. I’m just pointing it out because I can. Get off my back. ANYWAY… LIMITLESS stars Jennifer Carpenter (DEXTER) as Brian’s FBI partner/liaison/love interest? Also, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio! I’m definitely going to give LIMITLESS a shot. I love everyone attached to it. I love the premise. I love the fun the writers can have with a world where NZT exist. I also need to know what Bradley Cooper has in store for Brian. I’m down.
NOT A REBOOT!
I give the LIMITLESS pilot 8 out of 10.