Based on the novel The Dark Fields by Alan Glynn, and directed by Neil Burger, Limitless stars Bradley Cooper as Eddie Morra, an unsuccessful and broke author who is also suffering from a bad case of writer's block. His apartment is a mess (and so is his hair), his career is taking a serious downfall and his girlfriend (Abbie Cornish) decides to leave him. One day, Morra bumps into his ex-wife's brother Vernon (Johnny Whitworth), a "reformed" drug dealer. When Vernon notices Eddie's bad state, he offers him an unusual looking (still unapproved and under testing) pill called NZT that will turn his life around. The incredibly expensive pill enables him to access 100% of his brain which in turn organizes his thoughts, allows him to think clearly, speak different languages, make millions in the stock market AND finish his book in record time.

Eddie's skill in the stock market pushes him into the financial world and his high profile status catches quite a few eyes, including those of New York tycoon Carl Van Loon, played by Robert De Niro. What Eddie doesn't realize however, and what Vernon never told him, is that continuous use of NZT has serious side effects. Naturally, his unbelievable success also raises a few skeptic eyebrows and makes him a target to some shady crooks.

The movie is fast paced at times, and slow paced during others. The action sequences are exciting and many scenes are filled with high quality cinematography and digital effects. With that being said, though, the directing is not at its optimum, and some effects are a tad below par.  I couldn't help but compare them to some of the more sophisticated movies like Inception.

When it comes to the cast, despite great performances, many of the main characters are underused. Robert De Niro doesn't get enough screen time as one would expect. Abbie Cornish makes some supporting appearances though not as many as I would have liked. Anna Friel, who plays Eddie's ex-wife, makes a very brief appearance, unlike what the opening credits suggest.

Knowing that the film is an adaptation, it should be noted that it was done justice. The storyline was extremely interesting and probably wasn't done before on film. The script was consistent, clear and riveting and the dialogue equally so.

Limitless is a highly entertaining movie with a very interesting plot that includes lots of twists and a great cast.

Rating: 4/5

– Alya N. Al-Othman


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