2021 Movie Draft- Round 2 Pick 1: Strange Dylan selects- in the Romance/ Holiday/ Animation category- Her
Strange Dylan’s blog can be found at-
Love in 2021 compared to love in the 90s, 80s, so on is a new world… People looking at each other, talking, embracing one another was what made love… love. However, in 2021, things have changed. Social Media apps such as Tinder, Bumble, and Facebook have changed how Love is shared. In a world that is connected, there seems to be more social disconnection… Spike Jonze’s 2013 romance Her explores these concepts. Theodore Twombly (Joaquin Phoenix) is a writer in an unknown time period that seems to be the not so distant future. The computers are complex, so are phones and games… The world itself is similar to today’s, people talking, not to one another but through a small handheld device. For Theodore, this world is regular, for us, it is slowly creeping in.
Joaquin Phoenix’s film is hardly recognizable and flourishes on-screen; Phoenix also does a great job at allowing his character to be not only funny and sad but relatable as well. Phoenix is alone in this world and I feel everyone is as well. It is easy to fall in love with a program that tells us what we want to hear and does he fall in love hard. This is also in part to Scarlett Johansson as the voice in Twombly’s ear. Samantha is sweet and seductive that traps Twombly in a digital romance web as it forbids him to grow from his past relationship. The shots within Her are very emotional. Close up of actors and soft light showing the pores in the skin allow the characters to look alive on screen and allow us to step into their shoes. One moment when Twombly is facing the hardest situation in his life, the camera is close upon him. We feel him through this tight angle, as it does not let us look away. We must face it as he does. Another thing the cinematography does well in is during the past scenes. The handheld shots in the past feel as we are watching the events unfold, not stuck on a tripod but alive. It will shake as the relationship itself shakes, and the lighting shifts in moods to allow the audience to feel the darkness surround Theodore. The score is personal with beautiful piano chords that strike the heart in every necessary scene. While not subtle it is apparent as it needs to be, and allows the ending to let us feel what we need to feel instead of leaving us with the ambient city noise, lost in despair. It comforts us despite the bittersweet context. Close to the end, there is a release of sorts that I will not spoil but the score itself flows in a slow piano that almost acts like long breaths for Theodore. Overall, the film feels like a spiritual successor to Lost In Translation with mood, characters, and themes. The acting feels real and does not feel forced in any way, and I love the dynamics between Twombly and Samantha. Both bring out a very strong romance that I feel more films will explore soon.