We are told time and again that we use only a small portion of our brains and have enough left over to run nations in our down time. “Limitless” is about Eddie’s adventures after his ex-brother-in-law gives him a pill that suddenly puts his entire brain online.
He finishes his novel at typing speed. He wins at poker, invests in the market, and runs it up to millions. He fascinates a woman who had rejected him as a loser. He knows intuitively how to handle situations that used to baffle him. He is hailed as the Wall Street guru of the age.
Eddie is played by Bradley Cooper as a schlep who becomes a king. This sort of stories are already done by many directors but the difference here is that Eddie Mora remains himself before and after, and all that changes is his ability to recall everything he ever saw or heard. “Limitless” assumes that would be a benefit and make him rich, but what if most of what he ever saw or heard about Wall Street was wrong.
The movie sidesteps the problem that what we need is more intelligence and a better ability to reason, not a better memory. For memory, modern man has Google. There’s no need to stumble over such technicalities, however, given its premise “Limitless” is passably entertaining. Abbie Cornish plays Lindy, the successful young professional woman who dumps Eddie as a loser and falls for him all over again when he becomes a winner. This is not sneaky on her part. There is every reason to dump the original Eddie and many good ones to return.
Eddie has to deal with three main problems. The first problem is that he is running out of pills so if he wants to survive in the position and tackle the people he needs that pill again and needs to find a relevant source to them. The second has to do with a mob loan shark who liked being smart and wants to get that way again and want those pills from him.
The third involves another person named Carl Van Loon, played by Robert De Niro, as