Danny Boyle’s Oscar nominated 2015 Steve Jobs re-telling seems to get lost in an enormous sea of other Steve Jobs movies. The movie falls a little short in most cinematic aspects, yet manages to stay on its feet due to its two wonderful leads, Michael Fassbender and Kate Winslet. The movie, which is split into three clear-cut acts, is awkwardly paced and manages to make even the most minor character unlikeable. The direction is awkward and fairly tiring to watch; the supporting cast is also bland and uninteresting. Essentially, this movie is not especially fun or enthralling to watch and manages to make an otherwise interesting story into a poorly-made drama that kills all interest for the characters.
Michael Fassbender does the seemingly impossible by sparking a small flame in this otherwise cold and dry film. Not only does Fassbender make the mind-bendingly flat dialogue by playing with rhythms and tonality to the extent of Benedict Cumberbatch or Jack Nicholson. But the character’s cliché ‘egotistical yet flawed genius’ makes Fassbender’s otherwise wonderful performance dull and tiresome; Fassbender puts a lot of effort into the role, but it easily gets lost because of the script and direction. But this is really one of those films where you could re-watch the movie and pick up on so many colorful nuances and muscle twitches that prove the effort and detail Fassbender put into the role, but personally I don’t really want to re-watch the movie. Kate Winslet plays Jobs’ assistant—or something like that—who is the straight-woman who tries to make Jobs a better person. She plays the role with decent acting and fairly convincing emotional development, but she doesn’t really make the character interesting or likeable. There are also a few other actors in the film; Seth Rogen plays an angry computer-geek version of Seth Rogen, Katherine Waterston plays a crying mother you wish would just disappear, Jeff Daniels and Michael Stuhlbarg also had roles in the movie.
The movie’s screenplay—which won the Golden Globe for best screenplay—was (at least in my opinion) one of the numbest and most lifeless screenplays of 2015. The movie is split into three very clear-cut acts that take place in three very different times. But what really makes the screenplay flat and a few notches below standard is the obvious lack of excitement for technical advancement that he screenwriters had. There’s talk of the Apple products but it’s such technical and sad dancing around the excitement that a biographical drama should have for its selling-point. The one single point in the movie where there is supposedly some excitement with the actual subject matter, it is abnormally underwhelming and glossed over that it is far from satisfying. So yeah, the screenplay was underwhelming and gray. This movie was also very unpleasant to look at; the only colors that I really remember except for different shades of gray; there were probably colors in the film, but all I remember is the excessive use of grays. The direction was—pardon my over-use of this word—unpleasant to watch; one scene especially stood out to me. In one scene Fassbender and Rogan yell at each other from across a theatre in the most lifeless and unbelievable fashion you could imagine. The acting wasn’t off, but the awkward stillness and immobility of the scene made it unnatural.
The movie was unpleasant at best, but it showcased two… One… Wonderful actor who really puts effort and dedication into this film. The directing was unnatural, as if Boyle doesn’t realize how humans behave or communicate. The screenplay seemed bored of itself, which really does not make for a wonderful movie under any circumstances. And to make the movie more unbearable, most of the costumes, set pieces, and lighting is a dull shad of gray.
Best Aspect- Michael Fassbender
Worst Aspect- Aaron Sorkin’s screenplay
Rating- 2.9/10 or F