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Comments

Shawna

I just watched the film this evening, and it's the first film in quite some time that compels me to watch again, and PDQ. There's a lot to take in -- not just the story, but the world -- I was fascinated with the people around Theodore and how they lived in this near-future world. Amazing stuff.

mernitman

Shawna: There are such passionately split opinions on so many of the big movies this year - so I'm really glad you felt this way. I'm excited to watch it again, too.

Bradford Richardson

Billy, you're writing is exceptional. HER, is now definitely at the top of my, Must See, list. Thank you.

Bradford Richardson

Ugh... "your"

E.C. Henry

Knew you'd do a post on this film. Haven't seen it yet, and kinda was thinking of skipping it, as I like my rom-coms about the character arcs of men and real, FLESH AND BLOOD, women. But "Her" sounds like one of those high concept, warning films, that provokes debate with the issues that you nailed in your post, Billy: isolationalism, narcissism, laziness, and the loss of human contact.

But those "issues" have a stigma with me; as I tend to want to go see a rom-com to get my belief in romance rekindled vs. squashed further down into the realm of unreality in light of how our society is trending.

Though "Her" strikes me at an emotional level of, stay away from this -- a lot like "Don Juan" does, I'll probably go see the movie "Her" JUST to broaden my horizons. After seeing "The Master" and considering Joaquin Phoenix roles in last few years, he's definately peeked my interest; I like his choices as an actor, Joaquin's interesting... And Amy Adams in ANYTHING is always a treat. So okay, I'm getting there... just not in microwave fashion.

Billy, you've got one of most adventerous, romantic souls I've ever come in contact with. You're very daring, which contrast against my nature which tends to be pensive, slow to trust, and rooted in old-fashioned beliefs which afects the way in which I precieve the world.

Judith Duncan

Hey Billy,
I've been M.I.A. for a while, working at adapting one of my screenplays into a novel and doing classes at UCLAext online, while doing the dreaded 9-5.So basically working my bum off. It is wonderful to come back and read through the posts I've missed. Love Actually is one of those films that always makes me feel a little prickly. I think the Prime Minister with the tea lady storyline lost me. Considering the class system in England...puhleese. However I do love Richard Curtis.The dialogue in the opening scenes of Four Weddings and a Funeral is a joy. Never has an expletive been used so wonderfully. I went to the movies for the first time in ages during the holidays and saw Thor(full of sound and fury signifying nothing). Don't know why,perhaps just the lure of Chris Hemsworth's chest after months of hard work. As I left the theatre I saw the poster for Her,reading your thoughts on it now I know I have to see it. Thanks for the interview with the Nicholls winner, that's always been a big dream and it's good to know how people get there and that the script was worked on at UCLA. On the strength of what I've worked on at UCLA,I've been accepted into a workshop at The Djerassi Artists Retreat in June 2014 to work on my novel.About to get stuck into crowdfunding to raise the money to get there.Have a wonderful New Year and all the best for 2014.
Cheers,Judith

mernitman

Thank you, Bradford - hope you enjoy it!

EC: Thank you for your heartfelt and illuminating "sharing" - I get where you're coming from and I support your willingness to maybe, maybe step outside your comfort zone. I think Her may strike a chord with you (more than Don). At any rate: Happy New Year!

Hi Judith: Thanks for the update, and congrats on the Retreat! Best to you in 2014.

zach

As a romantic comedy, I wholeheartedly agree. I really liked this movie. But in terms of the bigger picture, even with the beauty and the laughs I also find it somewhat horrific. I need to find a place to talk about the damn thing without spoiling it. But I will ask this: what did you think of the dolly track they left (without digitally erasing) in the last scene of the film? I find it hard to believe that a movie with such a nuanced eye would let that slide. It's driving me bats!

zach

I laughed out loud at Alan Watts, though. I was like "fucking Alan Watts! Always screwing shit up!" (That can't possibly be a spoiler, can it?)

mernitman

Hey Zach: Embarrassed to confess (there goes my True Cinefile status, right into the dumpster, and at New Year's, no less) that I didn't notice said tracks! Too absorbed in the moment - though I'll go back and look. I would imagine that there must have been something about that particular take (and perhaps there were only a few, 'cause of sunrise magic hour issues) that Jonze really loved, and so he just went, Fuck it, only Zach Chassler will notice. The Alan Watts bit was genius, and I laughed out loud, too. Meanwhile, I kind of think it IS a horror film, in a way, only skewed to be benign, i.e. he left out the ending where the AI hive returns to enslave humanity, etc. (not a spoiler, kids, I'm just making shit up).

zach

I don't know. He could have scrubbed those tracks easy. I think it has to be a comment on the artificial nature of everything. I was hesitant because Jonze isn't known for his writing chops, but the guy can write. Also, I totally thought of you for a lot of the movie. I was like "Billy is going to love this." It's so weirdly traditional while being cutting edge at the same time. Can wait to talk about it in person and bother the hell out of everyone back in the bullpen while doing so.

mernitman

Totally. Looking forward to it (I'm on lot Thursday and Friday) and in the meantime, HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! to you and the family.

Bob

In the future, dolly tracks will be left on roof tops in memory of the obsolete art of making films.

Connie Josefs

Key scene - along the lines of your spot-on intro re: narcissism - was the restaurant scene where Theodore and his ex-wife are signing papers. Hilarious and profoundly cringe-inducing. Notable that the "invisible" waitress is, I believe, the only non-white (or Asian) character in the movie. Her parting line something like,"Just let me know if you need anything." Multi-layers abound.

mernitman

Bob: In the future Dolly Tracks will release their first E.P. "I Dreamed I Had a Blog" about the obsolete art of online film criticism.

Connie: It's a marvelously multi-layer meta-movie.

Rob in L.A.

I just came from seeing "Her," and I loved it from its opening shot (honestly). I was a little bit worried (based on snippets that I heard about the film) that the story might veer into third-act sci-fi melodrama, and I was relieved that this didn't happen. (Great screenplay! I wouldn't be surprised if Charlie Kaufman gave it a polish.)

Since we didn't see Scarlet Johanson's pulchritudinous bod and foxy face on the screen, we pay closer attention to her voice. And I was amazed at all of the subtle inflections that she was able to give it. I was amazed at all the nuances — and hints of tenderness — that she conveyed with every line she spoke. By the end of the movie, *I* was in love with Samantha!

"Her" isn't a rom-com (in my book), but it's certainly a film that every rom-com scribe should see (at least once). Well done, Mr, Jonze!

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