Her surprises with a creative, beautiful twist on classic love story
I originally approached this film with hesitation. The idea of a man falling in love with a computer made me think of a man falling in love with say…Siri, or something like that.
Due to this hesitation, I originally decided to approach the film with a psychological perspective, thinking it could be interesting to analyze the film from the point of view of a psychologist looking at people with sexual paraphilias.
But as the film progressed, it began to pull on my heart strings and it no longer felt like a man in love with a computer, but rather a man and woman in love, with a great distance between them.
Her, directed by Spike Jonze, follows a man named Theodore, played by Joaquin Phoenix, as he struggles with a divorce and a complicated relationship with a computer operating system.
It takes place in a distant technologically advanced future where a company comes out with an operating system (OS) that is artificially intelligent.
Theodore purchases this new OS and develops a relationship with it. He chooses for it to have a female voice, and the OS herself chooses to have the name Samantha. Samantha, voiced by Scarlett Johansson, and Theodore develop a relationship that begins as a close friendship but turns into something more.
At first, the film is strange. It can be hard to wrap your mind around the idea that this man is falling in love with a computer.
But as the film goes on, the OS —Samantha—becomes more and more her own person and their relationship becomes more and more complicated, as relationships between humans do.
The audience finds out that other people are also developing relationships—friendships or more—with their OSs and it is not viewed as strange or weird at all in this future world. As the characters in the film become okay with their relationship, so does the viewer.
After a while, it just feels like any other romantic story. The film will make you laugh and maybe cry and it is one that will surely bring enjoyment.
The film won one Oscar, for Best Writing—Original Screenplay, and was nominated for four others. It also won one Golden Globe for Best Screenplay and was nominated for two others.
While the film itself has not been as widely critically acclaimed as say American Hustle or 12 Years a Slave, two of the other films acknowledged at this year’s Oscar’s, it is one that deserves to be watched and loved.
It covers complex themes like love, loss and depression, and as such, draws the viewer in until they feel like they themselves have lost when Theodore loses and gain when Theodore gains.
The film is relatively unorthodox, but it is creative, melancholy, beautiful and intriguing. If possible, I highly recommend seeing this film this weekend in Rausch Auditorium, tonight at 7:30 p.m. and 10 p.m., tomorrow at 7:30 p.m. and 10 p.m., Sunday at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
However, as a warning the film does feature quite a bit of language and some sexual content.