Steve Jobs Movie Review
Sharply written, furiously entertaining and superbly acted, the Danny Boyle/Aaron Sorkin love child Steve Jobs is everything you wanted the movie to be and more, a slick, concise and contained piece of filmmaking the revered Apple founder would respect--as long as he could get past the fact that he’s portrayed as the asshole everyone knows he was.
Unlike other movies about Jobs that took a leaden, check-the-box approach to his life story, Oscar-winning screenwriter Aaron Sorkin (The Social Network) focuses exclusively on three pivotal time periods in the man’s career, all set in the minutes and hours leading up to his introduction of a new product line (the Macintosh, the NeXT and the iMac). The movie is not about what he did but who Steve Jobs was, dramatized and exaggerated for our viewing pleasure.
Michael Fassbender is all but guaranteed an Oscar nomination for his portrayal of Jobs, playing him as an extremely intense, passionate and nearly sociopathic individual, a marketing genius who neither has time, nor much consideration, for the emotions of those around him. Fassbender is spellbinding and immerses himself so completely in the role you forget you’re watching an actor play a part, and Kate Winslet, as his right-hand woman, marketing mastermind and confidante, keeps stride with him, also delivering her finest performance in years.
Interestingly, one of the most explosive, lick-your-lips scenes of the movie entails a very public argument between Jobs and Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak (a perfectly cast Seth Rogen).
As good as the acting is, though, the writing is better. Sorkin, known for his quippy dialogue, unleashes hell, taking a deep dive into the mind and motivations of Steve Jobs while maintaining an exhilarating pace and entertainment level that a film with so many words should have no right attaining. Of course, Oscar winner Boyle (Slumdog Millionaire) is the man who brings the screenplay to life, pulling the strings and heightening the tension, drama and characters wherever needed. The Sorkin/Boyle collaboration is just as good as you’d expect, if not better.
Steve Jobs is nearly flawless--aside from a not so subtle “I’m going to build the iPod” moment toward the end that Sorkin apparently couldn’t resist. The movie is an excellent piece of filmmaking and easily one of the best movies of 2015.
Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.