The Lookout begins with Chris Pratt (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) as a cocky teenage hockey player; a car accident leaves him hollowed, with a frail, damaged brain. Levitt, one of the best young actors we’ve got, nails the frustration and wounded body language of a fallen jock idol, and creates a character far removed from the equally vivid adolescents he played in Brick and Mysterious Skin. The post-accident Chris is approached by Gary (Matthew Goode), supposedly a former classmate, who is planning to rob the bank where Chris works nights as a janitor. This feeble seduction into crime — Chris is plied with doses of house-partying and camaraderie — fits perfectly with the film’s desolate, small-town Kansas setting, where most people worth knowing seem to have moved away. Call it townie noir. Veteran screenwriter and first-time director Scott Frank has adapted some terrific crime pictures (Out of Sight, Minority Report), but his source material may have concealed a corny sense of humor, embodied here by Jeff Daniels as Chris’s wisecracking blind roommate (get this: he’s blunt-spoken and slurps his soup!). Still, he and Levitt make for a vivid character study, even if the thriller overtones don’t quite pay off.