Steve Jobs was undoubtedly an influential man, who many adored, and while I don’t want to sound insensitive, I wasn’t particularly interested in a film that told his life story. That was until I heard what they were doing with it. Michael Fassbender may not look too much like Jobs in real life, but the thought of him playing a character with this kind of story arc is interesting, and it’s not just him, as this is one of the best ensemble casts ever assembled. Add to that Danny Boyle, who if nothing else has made some interesting and alternative films. Add to that Aaron Sorkin, arguably one of the best dialogue writers in the business. Add to that the fact that the film is being presented as a three act play, set just before three major product launches throughout his career, and suddenly I’m interested.
As already mentioned, this film is a biopic about Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, and it follows him (often literally) at three key moments in his career. More real life drama is brought to the story as Jobs refuses to accept that he’s the biological father of Lisa, the child of his ex-partner Chrisann Brennan.
It’s hard to know where to start when discussing Steve Jobs, because there’s so much that deserves praise. The structure of the film could not have been any better, and having three scenes set both at important moments, and more or less in real-time added tension and drama, as you’re getting closer and closer to an event that can’t be pushed back. On top of this, the ‘opening scene’ is roughly forty minutes long, but by the time it finishes you feel as if the film is only just getting started, which means any chance of boredom is long gone. It’s the middle scene however that stands out the most, and even though it cheats a little bit with flashbacks, the revelations and drama keep hitting you, and the punches get harder every time.
Michael Fassbender gives a predictably excellent performance, but he’s not the only one. Seth Rogen doesn’t push himself too much, but gets a chance to show what he’s capable of when not in a comedy, Kate Winslet displays fantastic range, although her Polish accent is a tiny bit inconsistent, and while all of the other small roles feel natural, it’s Jeff Daniels who truly stands out. His performance here might be the best supporting performance of the year.
The direction is spot on, and while Danny Boyle has made some beloved films in the past, I think this is a career high for him. The same is true of Aaron Sorkin, who brings his usual fast paced dialogue, that had me both laughing out loud and had my mouth hanging open, while I could feel my heart speeding up in my chest.
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