|HER: A REVIEW
Relationships are hard.
In fact, a relationship of any kind with anyone can be overwhelming. Why is that? Well, we're complex creatures who live in a fallen, ever changing world. We're works in progress living within infinite, organic universes yet to be discovered by science.
Our minds race and our hearts pump as we go from moment to moment and experience to experience in search of whatever we think or feel is our bliss at present. We have these holes - in more ways than one, but speak for yourself - inside of us that we're desperately trying to fill with this or that in a vain attempt at happiness or fulfillment or purpose or the ultimate answer. Whatever that may be.
People are often the road kill of our endless pursuit. When we approach relationships in this way, loneliness ends up being our just reward. Relationships go bad mainly because of the misses ... misinterpretation, miscommunication, misrepresentation, mistaken this or mistaken that.
What am I doing? This is supposed to be a movie review. I don't know. That just came to me.
I just saw Spike Jonze's new film, "Her," starring Joaquin Phoenix in the flesh and the captivating voice of the always luscious Scarlett Johansson.
First off, let me just say that many, if not most people, would run for the hills after seeing a script like this one. A film about a lonely guy in Los Angeles who falls in love with an internet operating system?
This film is not for the faint of heart. That's exactly what makes it such a success. Spike Jonze does a fantastic job of making us face what we don't want to explore in our computer-flooded society.
We're all walking around and driving around while staring for dear life into our hand held devices at all hours of the day. If you think that you don't have a hot and heavy relationship with your iPad, think again. I dare say you spend more time with your hand held device than with anything or anyone else. Fess up. In fact, I'm on MY iPad typing these very words that you're reading on your computer right now. Am I wrong? If everyone lost their computers in some strange circumstance, people would be lost.
Who's creepy now?
The thing that I love about "Her" is that through Joaquin Phoenix's warm and sensitive performance, we're forced to face our own psychological reliance on technology. Hopefully it's not passionate or sexual, but it's a deep relationship nonetheless. WE are Phoenix's character in this film. Keep that in mind.
Johansson absolutely kills her role as the IOS voice that's the subject of Phoenix's fancy. Through this film, Spike Jonze explores intimacy, love, sex, humanity, personal evolution and all of the things that we run to and run from in human relationships. It’s a Thanksgiving feast for those who thrive on self-examination. The art direction is charming.
I left this film with an even greater understanding that no matter what we do to block ourselves off from relationships of any kind, we do so in vain. We are here on this earth to make nice with other people. Many of us spend our lives trying to shield ourselves from the risk, hurt and sloppiness of human relationships and lo and behold, human relationships are the engine for absolutely everything under the sun.
We can run and we can hide behind a screen and keyboard, but at the end of the day, our human frailty will sell us out every single time. The truth remains the truth no matter how many times we hit ....