Directed by – Spike Jonze
Starring – Joaquin Phoenix, Amy Adams, Scarlett Johansson
Cinematography by – Hoyte Van Hoytema
Soundtrack composed by – Arcade Fire
Year of release – 2013
Academy Award Winner – Best original screenplay – Spike Jonze
Brief outline – Her is a romantic, sci-fi, comedy about a man who grows to have feelings for his artificially intelligent operating system. Theodore is a writer who has recently undergone a breakup. He then purchases a new make of all round computer/phone/etc and his life begins to change.
Review – Her is a great film for so many different reasons. Whenever you think about the film, only positive things come to mind. Her is romantic, comedic, sweet and serious. It doesn’t matter weather you watch the film because you want to experience a certain genre e.g. romance. You will always feel extremely satisfied on a level of separate different genres and how they all work really well together. Overall it is a serious film as oppose to a comedy or romance. This film tells the story of a man who is looking for a relationship, but it explores is for the majority, verbally as oppose to psychically.
Samantha (Scarlett Johansson) is completely diffrent to any-one that Theodore knows. She becomes attahced to him psychically and you can see the connection between them. She is very relaxed, most of the time and the kind of person that Theodore needs.
Theodore’s past and present life is explored through his ex-wife Catherine and his best and child hood friend Amy (Amy Adams). Theodore has several moods, which he expresses throughout the film, but it constantly changes around other people. He is a bit unpredictable at times. He discusses his problems with Amy.
Reading a blurb on the film, that says that it is about ‘a man that starts to develop feelings for what is basically a computer’, you would think that it is without a doubt a comedy that cannot be taken seriously. But it is definitely a serious drama film. It is a feel good film, but obviously seeing as it is about romance, the mood swings from good to bad. The film takes you on a ride, almost like a seesaw, from high up in the clouds, to down in your own arms.
The audience is integrated with Theodore, his friends and surroundings almost immediately. You soon realize what kind of person Theodore is. Much credit is down to Joaquin Phoenix, who delivers a great performance as Theodore. You are very much at his side, the whole film, but often you feel like a spectator, listening to the two sides of the conversation, but as an audience member, you feel like you experience the film through Theodore’s eyes and therefore go through a string of emotions watching it. Because Theodore is a very relate able character.
The film has a very wide range. It is relate able to both adults and teenager. It is relate able to teenagers because of his more masculine side. Theodore is very much an old child. He still enjoys playing games and spends a lot of time on the computer. He is also relate able to adults because of Theodore’s more fragile feminine side. He is an easy going guy, and he doesn’t get up to much. But he is sweet and in need of comfort.
Much of the emotional reception is down to arcade fire, who composed the soundtrack for the film. It very perfectly matches how Theodore feels both towards other people and towards himself. The soundtrack is very heartfelt. It connects the audience, but with the film even further.
The setting matches the mood of the film, because it is set in a large industrial, business type city. This makes Theodore seem like a ‘small fish in a large pond’. This also shows, just what kind of an impact the OS’s are having on the rest of society. The setting makes for some wonderful shots. It is a strong part of it being a ‘feel good film’.
Verdict 8.9 – This is the kind of film that grabs you by the arms and carries you for the remainder of the film. Her is a very feel good movie. It integrates the audience, several ways, including performances and soundtrack. This is a film that will run long in your memory. It mixes romance, comedy and drama superbly well. Her is an outstanding film.