December 26, 2013

Movie Review: Her *****

Her is a film about love and loss and where we find our connections. This is a perfect role for Joaquin Phoenix. He's fantastic as Theodore, a forlorn, vulnerable, lonely man who writes other people's love letters for a living at a delightfully named company, I love the opening sequence which is an extreme close-up of his face where he speaks heart-warming words of love and you slowly realize he's speaking a letter into his computer when the camera pulls back and you begin to see and hear other cubicle people doing the same thing.
Theodore is separated from the wife he's known since childhood and falls in love with Samantha, the intelligent voice on his operating system, created from a combination of human traits to anticipate and respond to his personality. Samantha is voiced by Scartlett Johanssen, and I fell in love with her, too. She's clever and funny and charming.
The story takes place sometime in the future and if you think things are bad now, just wait. This seems very real to me, a world where people don't talk to each other, only into their headsets. It's beautifully filmed in this strange but not so strange world.
Amy Adams is Amy (the character's name), Theodore's friend whose husband leaves and who falls in love with her own operating system. There's no more appealing screen presence than Amy Adams.
Her is a very clever and creative commentary on this disconnected/super-connected world we live in, how we all strive for that human bond, and the unexpected places we might find it.
I loved this film. Five of five stars for Her.


LSC said...

You are usually so spot on with your reviews, that I often consult them before buying a ticket. I agree with you most of the time. This time, we couldn't be more opposite. Between the poor sound quality and Mr. Phoenix mumbling I could only hear/understand about 95% of the dialog. The only character in this movie that I gave two hoots about was Amy. Almost walked out about 3 times.

Samantha Hoffman said...

That's so interesting, isn't it? Sometimes I see a film that I can't imagine everyone won't love and this was one of those. But you're not the first person who's disagreed with me. That's why Baskin Robbins makes 31 flavors, as they say.