Saturday, February 15, 2014

Reasonably Content

You might opt to stay close to home, which really is not your style. Whether you are deep into a book or something else, you will feel quite content.

Let's just say I knew I had things to get done today and since I'll be away the next two days, I did stay close to home all day.

My one concession was a trip to Doner Kebab for a hale and hearty chicken shawarma before going to Movieland to catch an early movie.

Spike Jonze's "Her" had attracted a mostly middle-aged audience, curious I thought, because in some ways it's a rom-com, albeit a  delusional one, about the disconnected lives of the millennials.

The story of a guy who works for the serenely pastel, creating sensitive letters for other people to send to their loved ones shows him as broken-hearted after a failed marriage and living a listless, disconnected life where each day ends with video games and phone sex.

When he finally does go on a date, he lets slip that he knows she took a mixology course. "Did you look me up?" she asks eagerly and when he admits he did, she says, "That's so romantic."

I know it makes me a dinosaur, but I find absolutely nothing romantic about Googling someone before going out with them.

That life changes when he buys an operating system with such refined artificial intelligence that she can interpret his moods by his voice.

She reads his loneliness and gives him back excitement about life so it isn't long before they're in love with each other.

This is marginally dismaying because she's a voice in a computer which means when they have sex, there's no actual touching involved because she doesn't have a body.

Again, call me old school, but I really do require a body for everything from kissing to spooning with all the stops in between.

Not so this guy and the charm of the film is that Jonez makes you believe it as a love story every step of the way.

When one of his co-workers suggests a double date, he admits that his girlfriend is an operating system.

"Okay, maybe we can go to Catalina," the guys says nonplussed. And they do, three people and a disembodied voice have a picnic and carry on witty and philosophical conversation on a hillside.

And somehow it rings true.

The scary part is that it all makes perfect sense. She's got access to his hard drive and e-mails and the more he shares about himself, the more it helps "her" develop and fine tune the intelligence that's been programmed into her.

Kind of like the way the more you tell a new date about yourself in the early stages, the closer you begin to feel as he gets a sense of who you are and responds to the compatibilities.

In the movie, the two talk to each other more often than any real life couple I know as they share everything they're thinking and feeling.

Part of the charm of the intelligently observant movie was that there was no way to anticipate where the quirky story was going, leading to a string of surprises.

But Jonez even gives us a reason for that: Falling in love is the only form of socially accepted insanity.

Holy fun fact, Batman, I didn't need a movie to tell me that.

But at least it got this Gemini out of the house today.

1 comment:

  1. So it's like maybe if things go can kinda turn her off?