Remembering How To Survive
Chris Pratt (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) had it all; he came from a wealthy family, had a great future as an ice hockey player and he also had an attractive girlfriend. But that all changed the night he decided to drive without his lights off to see the fireflies and four years later he is dealing with the brain damage he suffered when he crashed the car which affects his memory and stops him from feeling normal, living with Lewis (Jeff Daniels) a blind phone operator and working as the night cleaner in a bank. One night in a bar he meets Gary Spargo (Matthew Goode) who along with Luvlee (Isla Fisher) say they knew Chris from High School but he can't remember them. Soon Chris is hanging out with Gary, Luvlee and their friends who after making him feel one of the gang talk him in to helping rob the bank.
There is a scene relatively early on in "The Lookout" where Chris goes to his car and sees that he has left the keys inside what he does is take his shoe off because that is where he keeps the spare key, something which he frequently requires. It is a fascinating glimpse in to the life of someone who is controlled by their brain injuries which make them unable to remember things. And it is entertaining to see how someone survives their day even though you find yourself wondering two things; how comes Chris can drive a car when he can't remember what a tin opener is and would a bank trust someone who is prone to locking their keys in a car with keys to the building.
It is the same sort of thing when we meet Chris's roommate Lewis because it is entertaining watching how Lewis gets through the day and his insight in to human nature and what people are really up to. It is a scene stealing performance from Jeff Daniels which gives the movie a much needed layer of humour due to that insight and wit.
The thing is that once you get past the entertainment fact of how both Chris and Lewis make it through their days what you have left is a crime movie where Chris's issues both those of having memory loss and the anger from not being normal are manipulated by a smart criminal who wants to use him. How this plays out, well I will leave this for you to find out but for me it was only okay with most of the entertainment coming from seeing how Chris and Lewis get through their days rather than the situation they find themselves in.
What this all boils down to is that "The Lookout" is entertaining but some parts of it work a lot better than others. Although I am sure that those who are fans of Joseph Gordon-Levitt will lap this movie up.