With the recent release of the Oscar nominees, one of the titles that stands out is “Her” by director Spike Jonze, starring master actor Joaquin Phoenix. “Her” is a black horse in the Oscar Best Picture race that has the potential to come through as a winner, if not f
or Best Picture then certainly for one of the other awards such as Best Production Design, Best Original Screenplay and best original score
“Her” takes place in the not so distant future when computers are just beginning to become self-aware. The story focuses on a lonely man named Theodore Twombly (Joaquin Phoenix) who is just getting out of a long, messy relationship. Twombly works for a company that writes personal letters for people who do not have the time or words to do it themselves. After a lonely stretch of time Twombly finds out about a new operating system that is self aware and can learn. Twombly quickly picks up the OS and activates it, and through this Samantha (voiced by Scarlett Johansson) is born. The rest of the film is a heartwarming and tear-jerking love story between Twombly and Samantha.
The concept of this movie is a strange one to be sure, a man falling in love with his computer seems far-fetched and far from reality, but this movie’s beautiful script and moving soundtrack makes the viewers feel connected to the characters in a way that only happens once in a blue moon.
One of the most noticeable themes throughout the film is the color red; it is hard to find a shot without a red object in it. Red has always been considered the color of love and this movie finds every possible excuse to throw red on the screen. At times it was a little distracting, but overall it added an interesting layer to an already complex film.
“Her” is a movie that makes all sorts of statements about the definition of a relationships and our modern day obsession with technology, as well as the fact that we do not care for our technology and we are willing to discard it for the next best thing. Spike Jonze has always been a strong, yet not well-known director, “Her” gives Jonze the opportunity to shine and is well deserving of the many awards has won and is up for.