Looker is a 1981 science fiction film. It stars Albert Finney, Susan Dey and James Coburn and was written and directed by Michael Crichton.

Dr. Larry Roberts (Albert Finney), a Beverly Hills plastic surgeon, is puzzled when four beautiful models working in television commercials request cosmetic surgery to make changes so minor that they would be imperceptible to the naked eye. When these models start dying under mysterious circumstances, he discovers they are all linked to the same advertisement research firm. Could this company that develops new advertising technologies be behind the deaths?


The Digital Matrix research firm rates advertising models by using a scoring system that measures the combined visual impact of various physical attributes in television commercials. In an experiment to increase their scores, some models are sent to Dr. Larry Roberts, a Beverly Hills plastic surgeon, to get cosmetic surgery in order to maximize their visual impact. After the surgeries are performed, though the models are now physically perfect, they still aren't as effective as desired. So the research firm decides to use a different approach. Each model is offered a contract to have their body scanned digitally to create 3D computer generated models and then animating them for use in commercials. The contract deals seem to be incredibly lucrative for the models: once their bodies are represented digitally, they get a paycheck for life, never having to work again since their digital model is used for all their future work in commercials.

However, when these same models start dying under mysterious circumstances, Roberts becomes suspicious and decides to investigate Digital Matrix. He has a strong interest in investigating the deaths: he is considered a prime suspect by the police (from evidence planted at the scene of one of the murders) and his most recent patient, Cindy (Susan Dey), is the last of the models to be digitally scanned.

During his investigation, Roberts discovers some advanced-technology devices the Digital Matrix corporation is using to hypnotize consumers into buying the products they advertise. He also discovers the L.O.O.K.E.R. (Light Ocular-Oriented Kinetic Emotive Responses) gun, a light pulse device that gives the illusion of invisibility by instantly mesmerizing its victims into losing all sense of time. Will it be the means of solving the intrigue?

Deleted Scenes

The 2007 DVD release contains the cut of the film as it was played in theaters. A scene in which Reston, after detaining Roberts and Cindy in his mansion, explains why he had the other models murdered was omitted from the film but can be seen in television versions. He explains that the models were the measurements and that it was corporate policy to 'shred' old 'documents' that competitors might use. (Looker-deleted scene (YouTube))


  • Looker was the first cinema to attempt to make a realistic computer generated character, for the model named "Cindy." It was also the first movie to create 3-D shading with a computer.
  • This film contains female nudity, though none of it is explicitly sexual in nature. Despite these graphic depictions, the film earned a PG rating.

See also

External links

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