Review: ‘Steve Jobs’ does a better Job

“There is a small girl who believes you’re her father…what are you going to do about that?”

“God sent his only son on a suicide mission, but we like him anyway cause’ he made trees,” 🙂

Steve Jobs (Michael Fassbender) said as he sat in his dressing room brushing powder on his cheeks before the launch of the first Mac Computer.

“Steve Jobs” the second film made since 2013 in honor of the late Steve Jobs is centered around the premise of the tech giant behind Apple Inc. Based primarily on the character of an icon Steve Jobs and the way he effected those around him, the offers a more personal look into his life.

With Danny Boyle as director (28 days Later, Slumdog Millionaire) and writer Aaron Sorkin (The Social Network), “Steve Jobs” exudes promise at the box office and to the hearts of the masses. The film has made over $520k in its first week of limited release beginning October 9th. The film due to hit screens everywhere on October 23rd.

(UPDATE: “Steve Jobs” grossing $2.7 million so far. Now on big screens every where! Click here )

Rather than watching a story about the man who created Apple it is simply a story about the man. It is a personal look into the life of the innovator and acts as a kudos/critique version with a little fluff. It is a moving, and truly thought provoking film, especially when thinking about how much Apple Inc has impacted societal and individual thinking.

Reminiscent of three acts in a stage play, “Steve Jobs” occurs over the course of three prominent product launches from 1988 to 1998 with scenes of importance in between. Every line delivered by Fassbender flowed so effortlessly in interacting with the other characters. Previously starring as young Magneto in “X-men: First Class”, Fassbender’s commanding presence allows him to fully submerge in the main character.

Enter Seth Rogan as Steve “Woz” Wozniak to simply ask Jobs to mention developers of the Apple II, a project Jobs previously collaborated with Woz on, in his speech right before the launch. Enter Katherine Waterson as Steve Jobs’ baby’s momma Chrisann Brennan, followed by Makenzie Moss as 5 year old Lisa Brennan to collect monies due for child support all before the Mac launch. This is a theme seen in each “act”: right before a launch, all hell breaks loose.

Jobs’ first CEO, John Scully (Jeff Daniels) was painted in the beginning as a father figure to Jobs and a menacing snake by the end. One scene that especially stands out is one right before the launch of the black cube with Jobs’ new company NeXT. Sculley calmly sits in a chair in the middle of a lengthy corridor, waiting for Jobs to enter. The two enter a quarrel that can be difficult to keep up with for those with selective hearing, but the tension between the two in that moment pulls viewers to the edge of their seats.

There are a few scenes that can make viewers feel as though they are in the movie. Just watching this film, there is overdose of euphoria by the sheer energy of the crowds awaiting the infamous Steve Jobs before launches. At each launch little Lisa Brennan enters at the perfect time, diffusing any tension. There are a few things that are just plain weird. One in particular, Chrisann comes back, seemingly high on something, arguing with Jobs about money. Jobs casually stands up, enters a bathroom where I used my imagination and decided he was dipping his feet in toilet water and putting his shoes back on. Confused? Me too. It was a strangely delightful “wait…what?” moment.

Going in, viewers should know that Steve Jobs has already passed away, but “Steve Jobs” does not highlight his deteriorating health or death. Even though the movie is somewhat dark and raw, there are a few hints of refreshing humor. It ends with an uplifting reconciliation with his eldest daughter, Lisa.

Steve Jobs 1955-2011 Cred: Jonathan Mak

Steve Jobs 1955-2011
Cred: Jonathan Mak

In the 2013 version “Jobs” Ashton Kutcher’s role was Steve Jobs and I have to say, Fassbender blew him out of the water within the first five or ten minutes of the film. As an android/PC user, I had the pleasure of seeing “Steve Jobs” before seeing “Jobs” so I went in completely unbiased. Kutcher attempted to embody Steve Jobs down to his walk, but it just didn’t give it to me. Kutcher’s high energy moments just touched the caliber of Fassbender’s calm. The characters highlighted in “Steve Jobs” made more sense than those in “Jobs”. Kate Winslet as Joana Hoffman, head of marketing, stepped in as Jobs’ confidant and advisor, especially when it came to his daughter, whom he denies multiple times.  “Jobs” focuses more on the product versus Jobs character.

If I were asked which version was better I would say “Jobs” was maybe 6.5 out of 10, but “Steve Jobs”, hands down, more entertaining and moving. It could easily get any character involved an Oscar nomination, specifically Fassbender and Rogan. (Sorry Mr. Kutcher)

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