This love story takes place somewhere in the near future and follows the intimate interaction between the protagonist Theodore (Joaquin Phoenix), and an artificial intelligence named Samantha (Scarlett Johansson). It explores the topic of human interaction, dating, and technology.
“Her” is much more than just an interesting movie. It’s an hypothesis about what could happen in the near future, and therefore it is able to explore realistic characters and situations. Additionally, it does so with a lot of humor and emotions so that the audience is captured during every scene. Moreover, the average love story has a predictable storyline whereas “Her” is full of surprises. Everything about this film is original, fun, and profound. There were moments that the dialogue was extremely deep to the point that it was almost enlightening. Additionally, One could make the argument that this film will become more relevant over time because of technology which becomes more intertwined with the dating experience. Another reason why this movie is so amazing is because of the use of setting, set, and colors. Every set design is coherent and feels like a beautiful painting, this includes the sense of near future fashion.
So basically this entire film is based on a very interesting concept, but does this mean that the story itself is any good? Yes, it does contain all the good ingredients such as all the aspects that were mentioned before, but that doesn’t automatically mean that the plot is great. One can watch a confusing movie which is very entertaining, and profound. So the question here is more about if the plot makes sense rather than it being fresh, and inspiring. The answer to that remains a little vague as the plot is very clear however it does have certain elements that really makes you question some of the actions and choices. For example; why are we introduced so late to Theodore’s ex/wife? In the beginning I thought that she was gone. Secondly, his conventional dating process was not realistic, or at least way too extreme in my opinion. They did not have to go all out and create a totally insane character for that first date. I understand that they wanted to create a creepy character, but they should have kept it a little more realistic. Moreover, how the date was established was a little too convenient, especially because Theodore doesn’t come across as social. This brings me to another point which is his social life. His interactions with his friends are sometimes merely on the level of acquaintanceship, and then it turns into something of a real friendship. This can be the case because their relationship evolved, but at one point you would expect that he still remains in contact with both of his friends, but he doesn’t. I can’t say too much here because I don’t want to spoil it, but I really had a difficult time believing that these relationships were real. The audience needs to believe that he has good enough connections which can set him up on a date while we never see any decent human interactions during the first act of this film. It would have been better if that first date would have come about through a dating app, or program instead of the ‘conventional/old’ form of being set up on a date by friends. Therefore, there was some sort of a gap between how I perceived the setting and Theodore, and how the film wanted me to perceive them. The main question remains if he is indeed an introverted person, or is going through a depressed period which makes him like this, or both. It is not the case that it feels totally imbalanced, but there is a certain gap which makes it seem a little strange at times.
Another issue is the big question regarding the artificial intelligence named Samantha (Scarlett Johansson). Without spoiling anything I can only say that the end didn’t make much sense from a technological, and consumer perspective. I guess one has to focus on the love story, and romance aspect to enjoy this part, but for me it was another weird, and unrealistic part of this film.
It seems to be the case that there are a few minor flaws, and that is also the exact reason why it is not rated any higher than 8.0/10. However, this is still a very profound, great and innovative romance story which one should watch. It can certainly be the case that we will have similar romance movies in the near future because this specific topic is not explored enough, and has so much to offer.
Director: Spike Jonze. Writer: Spike Jonze