Sunday, November 6, 2016

Steve Jobs

This movie opens a few years after the success of the Apple II, and just before the launch of the iMac, so as anybody who knows anything about the history of Apple can tell you: this entire films chronicles the period in Steve Job's career where we pretty much did nothing of note. Is that harsh? I don't mean to be harsh, I just find the decisions made in the structuring of this film to be kind of inscrutable. Almost nothing is said about how Apple helped to create the home computer industry, and even less is said about how Apple later transcended the computer industry and used its tech to basically take over the world.

It's basically just two hours of Steve Jobs being an asshole.

To its credit, I did watch the entire film, but I can't say I was ever truly entertained. I think I kept watching because I kept waiting for the movie to start, but then it never really did. The film basically consists of three long scenes, each taking place just before the launch of major products... Well, two major products and also the NeXT. It's incredibly repetitive and strange, which each scene hitting entirely the same beats and plot points. The tech demo won't work, Jobs is made and yells at people, his wife and daughter just want to be loved. And then it ends.

I believe the coda of the film is that these products are all a part of Steve Jobs, and none of them will be successful until he made peace with himself and his inner demons. Of course, that's a pretty trite thing around which to base a film, but I don't even think it was supported by the plot. He never did make peace with himself, he just started to be kind of nice to his daughter a little bit.

About the acting I will say it was all pretty good, with Kate Winslet stealing the show as long-suffering Steve Jobs lackey Joanna Hoffman. I also really liked Michael Stuhlbarg as Andy Hertzfeld. I didn't get Michael Fassbender as the titular main character, and I thought he came across as more of a movie star than as any kind of real marketing genius. That wasn't the Steve Jobs I knew. And, of course, this movie continues the long tradition as casting any random fat guy with a beard as Steve Wozniak.

Hey... here's a question: Why has nobody made a movie about Steve Wozniak? I realize it would be boring, but so are all of the movies about Steve Jobs. At least this one was.

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