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Her is not only one of the best films of 2013, but it is one of the most important movies I’ve ever seen. The premise sounds weird right? A man falls in love with his operating system? Well, not only is it immensely interesting but it’s take on human relationships is among the most eye opening messages I’ve ever seen in a movie, period. If there is a movie someone should see from the year 2013, message wise, Her is among the top of that list.
Spike Jonze has written a script that I believe should not only be nominated for best screenplay but maybe even win. There are no action scenes in this movie to try and grasp for the audience’s attention. All you get is Theodore, played by Joaquin Phoenix, bonding with his operating system and having to deal with his past issues. I was never bored during this film and never knew what was going to happen next. The dialogue between the characters just feels so real with a few lines surprising me with their authenticity. The cast is just great. Joaquin Phoenix gives an academy award worthy, heartfelt performance as Theodore. He is one of the best characters of the year and will have you nearly tearing up at parts. Scarlett Johansson plays Samantha who is the operating system that ends up being Theodore’s girlfriend. Her voice is absolutely perfect for the role and you really feel as if Samantha is a real person. Amy Adams, Chris Pratt, Olivia Wilde, and Rooney Mara are all great and you will believe these characters exist. That is actually one of the movie’s greatest strengths is that this world feels real. Jonze showed with Where the Wild Things Are that he can handle characters feeling as if they are real people and he does it once again. In addition, the dialogue and the relationships are all so genuine it is startling at times. The directing is out of this world fantastic by Spike Jonze. He has hit yet another home run with Her.
The cinematography is beautiful and each shot is clearly well thought out. The movie is among the best looking films of 2013. Most of the time the camera work doesn’t jump out at me but similar to when I watched Skyfall, I noticed how great the film was shot. My main concern for the flick is that people will go in not expecting what they are going to get. One lady in line near me for the screening asked me why I was there because “Her is a chick flick”. During some really emotional scenes where I was really invested, my audience was cracking up. I think they went in expecting a comedy and treated the movie as such from the beginning. My only real complaint is that it feels as if it drags a little at points, but I was never bored. Also, I was really tired and had to use the bathroom so that could have certainly altered my immersion. When the movie ended, I just sat there in the theater trying to figure out what it’s message is. It’s take on human relationships is very thought provoking and will leave you having to piece together your reaction to it. The next day one of the dilemmas in this movie arose in my everyday life and that was when I realized how great of a movie it is. Her is not only a fantastic film but a very important one. It’s message and symbolism is great and will stick with you for days if not weeks to come. I can’t wait to see it again and it is a must see for anyone.