It’s almost shameful but watching this movie will certainly make you want to have the same magic drug as Eddie Morra. Not because you might be an ex-teen-addict who loved to get high, but rather because this experimental drug, NZT, allows you to use 100 percent of your brain to become the perfect version of yourself. Even your rule-abiding mother-in-law might be longing for this smart drug.
Morra is an unemployed writer suffering from chronic writer’s block. His brilliant girlfriend has just broken up with him because she got fed up trying to help him. No job, no love, no future. At this point in Limitless, Eddie is still a human character – he could be your likeable, slightly doofy neighbor. But as soon as Eddie is introduced to NZT, his life completely changes. He becomes highly focused and confident. He can suddenly recall anything he has ever read, heard or seen, which enables him to become a financial magnate, to get his ex-girlfriend back and to be a very sociable guy everybody is impressed by.
But can we still call him human? When does a man stop being a man and become something closer to robot? The movie doesn’t provide an answer; it just shows a much happier hero. The only moral on hand in this paranoia-fueled action thriller is that being able to tap your full potential will not be possible without stirring up jealousy and making enemies. The question remains: would you take that pill?
LIMITLESS | Directed by Neil Burger (USA 2011) with Bradley Cooper, Robert De Niro, Abbie Cornish. Opens April 7