Sunday, October 25, 2015

Steve Jobs

        Director Danny Boyle and screenwriter Aaron Sorkin team up to give us still another look at Steve Jobs, the iconic mastermind behind Apple. There are many documentaries and books about Mr. Jobs and Mr. Sorkin's screenplay takes a very different approach to peel back the curtain behind the man.

         Rather than try to be biographical, the screenplay focus is on three of the most important product launches in Mr. Jobs career, "The Macintosh", " Next" and the "iMac". The film is literally divided into three sections and the same characters appear each time to basically argue and fight with Mr. Jobs about his products and his approach. The one character that adds an emotional connection to the story is  Mr. Jobs's daughter, Lisa who we first see as a five year old, then nine, and finally nineteen. During the first arc, Mr. Jobs vehemently denies Lisa is his daughter but there is a growing connection between them as the story progresses and his seeming acknowledgement by the end is the core of the film. 

         What is most appealing is the terrific acting of Michael Fassbender as Steve Jobs and Kate Winslet as Joanna Hoffman, his long time head of marketing. While Mr. Fassbender is certainly no dead ringer for Mr. Jobs, he does an excellent job capturing the essence of the man and Ms. Winslet disappears completely into Ms. Hoffman. Jeff Daniels co-stars as John Scully, Apple's CEO and it's a typical role Mr. Daniels can do in his sleep. Also in smaller but significant roles are Seth Rogan as  Steve Wozniak and Michael Stuhlbarg as Andy Hertzfeld. 

          Mr. Boyle directs with his signature kinetic pace and Mr. Sorkin's screenplay is filled with his signature verbal barrages. Normally both would impress but the structure of the film doesn't serve them well. They strive more for entertainment than truth but end up with just a series of incredibly repetitive confrontations that don't really entertain and certainly play hard and fast with the facts.

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