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Plastic surgeon Larry Roberts performs a series of minor alterations on a group of models who are seeking perfection. The operations are a resounding success. But when someone starts ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Dr. Larry Roberts
...
...
...
Jennifer Long
...
Lieutenant Masters
...
Moustache Man
...
Dr. Jim Belfield
Kathryn Witt ...
Tina Cassidy
Terri Welles ...
Lisa Convey
Michael Hawkins ...
Senator Robert Harrison (as Michael Gainsborough)
Ashley Cox ...
Candy
Donna Kei Benz ...
Ellen (as Donna Benz)
Catherine Parks ...
Jan
...
Commercial Director
...
Cindy's Mother
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Storyline

Plastic surgeon Larry Roberts performs a series of minor alterations on a group of models who are seeking perfection. The operations are a resounding success. But when someone starts killing his beautiful patients, Dr. Roberts becomes suspicious and starts investigating. What he uncovers are the mysterious - and perhaps murderous - activities of a high-tech computer company called Digital Matrix. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

If Looks Could Kill...

Genres:

Drama | Sci-Fi | Thriller

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

30 October 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

As Belas São Assassinadas  »

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The name of the research conglomerate was Reston Industries, while the name of the research facility was Digital Matrix Inc. See more »

Goofs

When Dr. Roberts is looking for a hiding place for the key card, the clock on his bookshelf indicates that the time is 2.30. Seconds later, it has jumped forward 15 minutes, showing 2.45. We know this is before he's been hypnotized because the negative effect hasn't been used yet and the background music has been playing continuously. See more »

Quotes

John Reston: Television can control public opinion more effectively than armies of secret police, because television is entirely voluntary. The American government forces our children to attend school, but nobody forces them to watch T.V. Americans of all ages *submit* to television. Television is the American ideal. Persuasion without coercion. Nobody makes us watch. Who could have predicted that a *free* people would voluntarily spend one fifth of their lives sitting in front of a *box* with pictures? ...
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Connections

Features The Lucy Show (1962) See more »

Soundtracks

Flute Concerto, Op.10, No.2, RV439, La notte
(uncredited)
Composed by Antonio Vivaldi
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User Reviews

 
Dated, poorly written and directed, yet still not bad!
10 October 2003 | by (England) – See all my reviews

Dr. Larry Roberts (Albert Finney) is a top Beverly Hills plastic surgeon who finds himself embroiled in a sinister mind-control conspiracy. After three of his patients are killed in suspicious circumstances, Larry takes it upon himself to protect the apparent next victim, Cindy (the beautiful Susan Dey) and also solve the mystery.

‘Looker' is possibly director Michael Crichton's most criminally underrated film. Admittedly the screenplay often leaves a lot to be desired but the initial premise is both intriguing and fear-provoking. Crichton's script makes some rather fascinating, and in hindsight rather perceptive, comments about how corporations can abuse both the media and the general public simply through the use of television. Towards the end a particularly pertinent speech is made by John Reaston (James Coburn) on how the general public is willing to submit automatically to the enormous power that television possesses. However, much of the power that ‘Looker' could have potentially possessed is lost with poor pacing, inappropriate and unrealistic dialogue and a couple of major plot-holes. In fact, some eminent questions remain unanswered and the movie ends on a sort of anti-climatic note.

Crichton's direction appears to be somewhat disjointed as the pace of the movie alternates constantly. To begin with ‘Looker' has the correct proportion of suspense to action and is quite thrilling to behold. Unfortunately, certain scenes such as a car chase drag on and become somewhat tedious. One particular sequence of events towards the end of the movie drags on for fifteen minutes and while to begin with is compellingly suspenseful, the sequence begins to feel old and certainly spoils what could have been an effective ending. ‘Looker' also suffers from some particular bland performances, particularly from central actor Albert Finney. His performance was predominantly lacklustre and featured uninspired sequences in which Finney would avoid gunfire by unenthusiastically throwing himself across the floor. That being said Finney did seem to fit the role of Larry Roberts and was fairly entertaining to watch. Susan Dey and James Coburn were both enjoyable in their respective roles and one wonders why more was not done with their characters. Had more time been spent trying to develop these characters then maybe something more could have been done with the movie.

Surprisingly, despite all its flaws ‘Looker' is still somewhat compelling. It is certainly not Crichton's best film but is still vastly underrated in my opinion. The opening sequence is suspenseful and intriguing which is occasionally echoed throughout the rest of the movie, though unfortunately not enough. ‘Looker' is blessed with some wickedly delightful black humour, particularly towards the end and a bizarre, yet mesmerizing, electric musical score from Barry de Vorzon. Some fans will be happy to know that there are unnecessary scenes of full frontal nudity, including one from Susan Dey. The humorous overtones of that particular scene undoubtedly shine through. The ideas of hypnotic and subliminal messaging are what make ‘Looker' compelling even though the film is still heavily damaged by the lack of decent characterisation and storytelling. I think ‘Looker' is worth watching but is most certainly not to everyone's taste. My rating for ‘Looker' – 6.5/10.


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