Calling a film a love story when it refers to a man talking to an artificial intelligence program, but after watching this film it feels so perfectly right. Boosted by a very strong performance and a very real story, ‘Her‘ is actually a really great exploration of what love is.
Joaquin Phoenix is Theodore, a very lonely fellow who writes very lovely messages in letters that other people send to other people they love. Theodore has nobody to love after his wife divorced him and now lives a very isolated, depressed life. That is until he buys an operating system which speaks for itself, names itself Samantha and speaks with Scarlett Johansson’s voice. The two begin talking all the time and soon, even begin to fall in love. It’s not your usual love story no, but what Spike Jonze does is to delve into what love really is through Theodore’s loneliness.
What does bring two people together? Or a man and an operating system? In this case it’s that they are both lonely and trying to discover who they really are. Joaquin Phoenix is really great in this film. His acting is so subtle and yet so full of emotion it is really something to behold. He really carries this film almost solely on his shoulders. He’s incredible. That’s not to say the rest of the cast isn’t good. Johansson provides a great voice for Samantha and Amy Adams delivers another good performance as Theodore’s friend Amy.
It’s a very beautiful film, not just in the way it is shot and its colour palette, but in the way it deals with the subject matter. It’s a comment on technology and the way modern relationships are going whilst also touching on deeper, more emotional topics. It’s funny but smart, depressing but light, emotional and touching. It really is a very well written film and and really great one too.
JACK’S SCORE: 5/5