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3.9 out of 5 stars
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3.9 out of 5 stars
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on 21 March 2015
Spoiler alert meter: 3/10

Set in the not too distant future, Theodore Twombly (Joaquin Phoenix, well known for Brother Bear) is a lonely writer looking for love. He's been through a divorce with his wife, Catherine (Rooney Mara, well known for The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo), and things have been becoming worse. Theodore is becoming more isolated day after day, nobody to turn to. After seeing an advertising campaign, Theodore decided to buy a ground-breaking operating system - here we meet Samantha (Scarlett Johansson, well known for Lucy), the voice-only technological assistant who has a very different way of looking at the world. He quickly bonds with this OS as it slowly starts to shape his life and who he is today...

Please note: Whilst watching the movie, I cried. I've never cried in a movie ever before, the screenplay and dialogue are truly phenomenal - this film deserves way more recognition and awards than it got. I would recommend anyone to go and see this and I hope you feel the same way I did after the movie, speechless (I even clapped at my TV because I thought it was that good.).

Overall Rating 9.5/10. Here's why?

+Great Screenplay
+They've defined the next generation of SF movies
+Joaquin Phoenix definitely stands out in this movie
-Not for everyone. But for me, this is jaw-dropping.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 17 January 2015
This is an exceptional film set in the near future which explores the nature of human relationships in a world increasingly dominated by technology. I hesitate to label it a SF film since the level of technology used is only slightly advanced to that in use today. Joaquin Phoenix gives a superbly subtle and understated performance as Theodore Twombly, a melancholy man grieving for the failure of his marriage. Unable or unwilling to start another relationship he purchases a talking operating system with artificial intelligence (Samantha) designed to adapt and evolve, and much to his delight and surprise begins to connect with the programme. The conversations between man and machine have a Woody Allen-esque feel and as their relationship develops Theodore begins to attain a level of self-awareness which is almost cathartic in nature. The storytelling is beautifully paced with a wry humour running through it, laced with a tender sadness. The thoughtful intelligent ending is both beguiling and intriguing as we are left to contemplate what our brave new virtual and human worlds may look like in the future.
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on 13 December 2014
This is the first time I've ever written a review for a movie, but I felt the urge to write about this film. Yes, the story is slow, but it is utterly consuming from start to finish, and to anyone who has felt alone in their life or sought company via technology, for example chat rooms, forums etc, I think on some level you will be able to relate to this movie. Theodore is in a state of melancholy after his wife has left him, he is distraught and alone and uses technology to seek any sort of human interaction. On a whim, Theodore purchases an OS which is essentially an AI. They develop a relationship and almost instantly this interaction with Samantha (the OS) brings joy and spontaneity back to Theodores life, which he has been missing for a long time. This movie explores the joy and heartache which comes about due to this unorthodox relationship. I found the movie completely mesmerising from start to finish, it may not be the type of movie you would watch frequently, but it is the sort of movie you must watch at least once in a life time, and experience it's compelling and thought provoking story.
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on 15 November 2015
Charming, intelligent, thought provoking film about love between a man and his computer operating system, set in the near future when the first truly conscious, independently thinking, computer operating systems are launched onto the market.

Raises many questions that we may well have to confront within some of our lifetimes, such as how a relationship between a conscious, thinking computer and a human being could work, given the vastly different speeds at which they could think and communicate.

The man is played by the very able and versatile actor Joaquin Phoenix, here seen with a moustache, so not immediately recognisable as the same person who played the very different characters of the Emperor Commodus in ‘Gladiator’ or Country & Western singer Johnny Cash in ‘Walk the Line’.

Officially, second billing on the cast list is given to Amy Adams (also hard to recognise from some of her previous roles, having blonde hair here), an actress whom I like and who is fine here, although this is not her best ever performance.

However, the real star and the heart of the film, who surely should have had an Oscar for this, is not seen on screen at all (nor, sadly, in the mostly slightly disappointing DVD extras). It is Scarlett Johansson, who voices the computer in a way that is charming and (at least to me) quite believable that someone might fall in love with, even if the relationship could not be consummated in a conventional sense.

I cannot say too much about the plot without giving things away, except that there are several twists and surprises towards the end, but this is a really good film, and stands up to viewing again.
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on 21 January 2014
*This review is for the film*

Directed by Spike Jonze (Adaptation,Being John Malkovich), 'Her' is a timely post-modern love story set in the not too distant future.

This is Jonze's first film written and directed completely from his own original script; and testament to his talent it is perhaps his best to date. The film is quite simply sumptuous in its entirety. But this is no single handed achievement for it also represents Joaquin Phoenix's (The Master,Walk the Line) most personal performance too. All set to a backdrop of vivid colour (Hoyte Van Hoytema, Cinematography) and delicate audio (Owen Pallett, Soundtrack).

Thematically the film is concerned with technology, specifically it's development and intrusion into our daily lives and habits. It can be said that (in a move that is already apparent in today's world) this technology is contradictorily disconnecting us from our actual lives culminating in isolation and loneliness. And yet our innate yearning for spiritual connection persists.

Intimately portrayed by Phoenix, 'Theodore' has made most of his journey already allowing the film to dedicate its time to his relationship with his new operating system, 'OS1', affectionately personified by Scarlett Johansson (Lost in Translation). This is "not just an operating system, it's a consciousness". It is Theodore's growing relationship with this operating system that is the subject matter for the film - the lack of bodily form is akin to a long-distance relationship - but its the adaptive intelligence of this operating system that takes this beyond a love story. Theodore's human friendship takes the form of Amy Adams (Catch Me If You Can,Man of Steel) who's onscreen bond can apparently be dedicated to Jonze's decision to lock Phoenix and herself in a room together for a couple of hours everyday.

Despite its potentially upsetting interpretations 'Her' organically floats along with surprising optimism, supported by Theodore's own disposition and it is not just Scarlet Johansson's inclusion that gives the film a 'Lost In Translation' ambience; you will find yourself taking a personal journey alongside Theodore high above the future Los Angeles skyline (actually filmed in Shanghai!...). This is an exploration beyond intimacy and love; Jonze will have you questioning your own spirituality and existence and perhaps eventual enlightenment?

Whilst these philosophical questions take a particularly sci-fi form 'Her' flirts with various genres - it will make you laugh and cry. And your personal experience will be heightened by the fact that this 'future' may not be as far in front as you initially perceive. Visually beautiful throughout and my favourite movie of this last year.
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In a near-future mega-city, we meet Theodore Twombly and his acquaintances. They live in a sort of slackers' paradise where, in spite of their trivial occupations, they have lovely casual clothes, great cosmetic dentistry, and inhabit large, luxurious apartments. Joaquin Phoenix is totally believable as Twombly, whose little job is writing love letters for other people. Like the few people he knows face-to-face, he is most concerned about his "personal growth", and relationships are disposable when they no longer serve that selfish goal. He is unsettled by real contact, and we go with him on an incredibly hot blind date which is more than he can stand.

But when Twombly casually installs an artificial intelligence on his computer, he really falls in love with it - and it falls in love with him. Scarlett Johanssen as the AI, with her voice alone, is his lover, friend, and obsession. She learns how to interact most effectively with her human, and part of that turns out to make her even colder and more self-obsessed than the humans. There's a shock in store for Twombly and us.

Jonze conjures up a superficially beautiful way to live, then exposes the loneliness of it. This is a film that sucks you into its world if you will just relax and enjoy the quiet pace of the plot, the convincing acting and the occasional surprise.
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on 17 October 2015
Excellent tale about a man and his machine [PC].
It poses many questions about love and technology, and how humanity will interact with artifical intelligence, when it arrives.
This could be used for education purposes in schools to educate children about human and machine interaction.
The voice of the artifical intelligence is Scarlett Johansson, an actress who never cesaes to provide intriguing performances.
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on 10 August 2015
This film is amazing, it's been a long time that I have seen such a brilliant film. It's so weird, in a very good way, as the story is something, I personally, have not seen before. I don't want to write down the story as many do as I feel this film can't be done justice with a paragraph of writing as it's one of those films where you can't capture the magic when people ask "What's it about?", all I've said to friends who've asked me about the plot is "Watch it" because it's just amazing. The futuristic setting, the dreamy music, amazing imagery and brilliant acting make this a beautiful film which I'll love for many years. In a way it reminded me of Blade Runner, another film that I adore.

I have seen a few reviews of people saying it was "boring" and "Over-hyped" is obviously someone's opinion which they of course are allowed to have but I totally disagree, I feel it's a one of a kind film that shouldn't be missed and for a film I'd never ever heard of until my girlfriend put it on Netflix as an off chance, it's pretty spectacular.
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on 7 May 2016
On paper, this film's storyline sounds dull, boring and a film I would normally avoid. I really did enjoy it, much to my surprise. The chemistry between Joaquin Phoenix and Scarlett Johansson develops very naturally throughout the film into a very believable relationship; even though Johansson doesn't actually appear on screen. An unusual but very profound and enjoyable film.
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on 26 February 2016
Very moving and novel. Cast are wonderful, music is perfect, and it is beautifully shot. Watched it twice in the space of a few days and it really has a soothing effect in its setting, light and melancholy. Plenty of joy to juxtapose the downbeat nature. A truly modern romance and Joaquin really is 'like a puppy dog' in it. The introduction of modern 'gaming' is very funny. Take a look at this film.
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