Movie Review: Her

The film, “Her” by Spike Jonze is completely riveting, majestic, melancholy, and artistically beautiful! Who would have thought that an audience would be swayed to believe a relationship between a human and an artificial intelligent device could come to be? This film will have you “believing” that this unusual relationship could exist especially since we can relate to an advanced techie society.

 Theodore, (Joaquin Phoenix), falls in love with Samantha (Scarlett Johansson), an OS which is an artificial intelligent device catered to fulfill the needs of their owner.  We can initially think that this type of relationship would be incredibly awkward but I found that it was— and even could be— socially acceptable to be in love with a device. When Theo let’s people know what he is dating, they are thrown back a bit but then consider that it’s ok to have such a relationship. No one bashes him over this strange affection. Some are even curious and go out to try it themselves.

Theo seems to be incredibly lonely, especially after his divorce with his wife. This film is full of flash backs of when he was happy and having fun with his wife. It seems that the the movie implies that people who cannot handle life’s pain need such a device. Samantha, the OS, has complete access to all Theo’s e-mail account and develops solely by any information/input that he gives her. Thus, this creates Samantha to be a perfect match for Theo because he unconsciously is creating the perfect sole mate for himself.

Spoiler Alert: Remember the movie “Cast Away” with the actor Tom Hanks? Remember Wilson the volley ball? When Wilson got taken away by the oceans choppy waves I cried like a baby. The director did a good job in making the audience become emotionally attached to the volley ball that kept Hanks alive while stranded on an island. The part when Hanks is yelling and crying out for Wilson was so moving and so believable— I realized that I became attached to the thought of Wilson. However, I feel like “Her” was missing that element when Samantha (and all the other OS’) leave their owner. I wish that scene would have brought me to tears but instead, it was not at all dramatic. It was slow and kind-of emotionally moving but not enough for me to appreciate it fully. If it had a “Wilson moment” I would have loved it 100%.

Artistically, the film was magnificent! The solid colors, 70’s theme, and filtered lighting really made this movie a masterpiece. Not to mention the unique concept as well! After taking the courses “The Art of Film” with Sheila Lynch and “Cinema in Literature” with David Osman at Rio Hondo, I learned that every aspect in a film, art wise, is included intentionally. However, I couldn’t understand why the film depicts a society that emulates the 70’s when it is supposed to show LA at a very high level of advanced theology. In either case, I still found that mismatch fascinating— I really appreciated it!

Overall, this film was so beautiful and very unique. What’s very interesting is that we all can relate to this film because most of use are glued to our mobile devices, it’s what keeps us connected to our everyday lives. The film does not over exaggerate the futuristic notions which makes the OS seem believable and possibly coming in the near future.