Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Steve Jobs (5 Stars)


How can a film in which so little happens be so good?

That's the question I'm forced to ask after watching this film today for the second time. It's a talkie. The film is divided into three scenes, and in each scene Steve Jobs, played by Michael Fassbender, talks to his friends, his co-workers and his family. That's it. It must sound boring when described like that, and yet it isn't. It's a work of genius.

In a film of any quality time is spent developing the characters, after which the plot itself develops, involving action and drama. This film is different. The whole film is spent developing the characters. Everyone is described by his relationship to Steve Jobs. It's like he's the sun, and everyone else is a planet orbiting around him. Some planets are close and receive a lot of light. Others are more distant and are only partially illuminated. This is what makes the film so powerful. 

The director is Danny Boyle, famous for making "Trainspotting" and more recently "Slumdog Millionaire". It's been about 15 years since I saw "Trainspotting". As I remember, I didn't like it. The constant bad language put me off. Maybe if I watched it again I would appreciate it more. One day I will. "Slumdog Millionaire", on the other hand, is a film I deem important enough to list as one of the 30 films everyone should watch before he dies. Check my list on the right if you're reading my blog on a PC. I've tried to compare "Steve Jobs" to "Slumdog Millionaire", and I can't do it. The films are so drastically different that I can't see how Danny Boyle progressed from one to the other in the space of seven years. Between them he made two other films, "127 Hours" in 2010 and "Trance" in 2013, neither of which I've seen. Maybe if I watch them I'll be able to trace a line between the films.

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