7:30 PM, 4th April, 2014
A movie where a man falls in love with Scarlett Johansson while we never see her and she’s not exactly real? It’s a strange premise which more or less works in the directing mind of Spike Jonze. In Her, Jonze directs a beautifully touching movie where a man falls in love with a phone. That premise for a movie sounds ludicrous, but it is pulled off in sparklingly shot style.
Joaquin Phoenix is perfectly cast as Theodore; a quirky, heartwarming man who earns a living as a writer of personalised cards for other people. He lives in Los Angeles in the not-too-distant-future, and is intrigued by the opposite sex, while having problems communicating with them – except for a platonic relationship with a neighbour (Adams).
This is where he falls in love with an ‘operating system’ (or the aforementioned phone) called Samantha, voiced by Johansson. We never see her, and she is only heard throughout the movie, but this doesn’t stop Samantha being full of empathy, complex with her feelings and generally making Theodore happy.
This film has a type of candy colour style to it within its scenes, which is a unique step for films set in the future, but a brave one. Jonze seems to like the dreamlike style of film that has permeated through his filmography. This seems to have hit its peak in Her.
9:46 PM, 4th April, 2014
It’s the not too distant future, and urban crime is out of control. OmniCorp is a multinational company who’s been producing military drones, and intends to use similar technology domestically. When Alex Murphy (Kinnaman) is critically injured in the line of duty, OmniCorp starts their plan for a part-man-part-robot police officer – but they never expected what would happen with the man they chose…
Remaking an iconic story is always an artistic gamble – you get the benefit of a familiar name, but you’re always going to be compared to the original, usually unfavourably. But pointing a highly qualified supporting cast (Oldman, Keaton, Jackson) at the material, with an interestingly sleek new design for the RoboCop outfit and a script that emphasises corporate skullduggery as much as heroic police action (and appears to take the material a little bit more seriously than the 1987 original, which was in places quite broadly satiric), this version has a better than even chance of at least putting its own spin on the character.