<Review by: Sailesh Ghelani>
Directed by Spike Jonze. Starring Joaquin Phoenix, Amy Adams, Scarlett Johansson, Rooney Mara, Chris Pratt, Olivia Wilde
For single guys fed up of real women and their drama, HER is the perfect film to go watch on Valentine’s Day. Fall in love with your OS!
It’s difficult finding love nowadays. Just imagine what it’ll be like in the future! Everyone has so many expectations, so many ‘lists’, so much drama and so many more options and outlets with social media that we can’t have regular relationships anymore. They’re all fractured and lopsided. Women don’t seem to have evolved beyond the point of getting married and having kids with the perfect rich husband. Men are still the kids they’ve always been and will always be.
Her deftly looks at how social interactions and intimate connections will be tackled in the not-so-distant future. We see how some will ultimately be lured into virtual relationships that will, at first at least, provide the intimacy and companionship without the drama and expectations of real world interactions.
Joaquin Phoenix is Theodore Twombly, a ‘letter writer’ in a modern world where most of his interactions are with his computer, mobile phone and video game. A failed marriage and a somewhat disastrous date with yet another woman seeking commitment after the very first date leads Theo to purchase a new Operating System for his computer.
You can customise it and speak to it and give it a gender and watch it evolve. So Theo is introduced to his OS, Samantha – the honey-voiced Scarlett Johansson – who enchants Theo with her practical mind set, her genuine interest in him and becoming a better OS. They go out together via his mobile phone and she sees the world with him through the phone camera and they have cyber sex via his earpiece.
Lovely images of a retro future in Polaroid hues capture the beauty of this budding romance. Around him Theo sees his friend Amy’s (Amy Adams) relationship fall apart while he himself immerses his being into a relationship with Samantha, which at first seems weird to many but later we find is becoming the norm in an increasingly isolated world.
Don’t watch the film if you’re feeling sleepy since the pace is a tad languorous. Most of the film consists of mainly dialogue between Phoenix and the voice of Samantha, which is both brilliant and monotonous at times. As a concept, it is wonderful and hits upon a great insight about how relationships can’t be approached the way they used to anymore. The future doesn’t look good for lovers so hang on to your friends!