I knew little about Apple founder Steve Jobs before seeing the latest movie about him, so I am unsure of the accuracy of the film ‘Steve Jobs’ by screenwriter Aaron Sorkin and director Danny Boyle.
Even if it is half true it’s not very flattering. Jobs comes across as an extremely clever entrepreneur and visionary but also an angry and emotionally unfulfilled man, who could be a bully.
The movie focusses on three major launches that Jobs leads. The first is the launch of the Apple Mac in 1984, then the ill-fated NeXT computer in 1988 and finally the iMac in 1988.
At each launch, shortly before he is due to go on stage in front of an expectant audience, he meets with those who are closest to him.
Many of these meetings are combative and as a result there are plenty of raised voices. As Jobs complains: “Five minutes before every launch people get drunk and tell me what’s wrong with me.”
A series of brief flashbacks provide the background although most of the action takes place backstage at the launch venue. We learn that Jobs feels John Sculley, the executive he bought on board betrays him. Jobs also had an adversarial relationship with Chrisann, the mother of his daughter Lisa (whom he refused to recognise for many years), resulting in a love-hate relationship with Lisa. He endured a similar complex relationship with many co-workers, including designer Andy Hertzfeld and former Apple co-founder and close friend Steve Wozniak.
Kate Winslett ( Joanna Hoffman) with
The only person he seems to get on with is his longstanding and fiercely loyal marketing executive Joanna Hoffman.
Michael Fassbender, who plays the role of Jobs, has understandably been nominated for an Oscar for best actor. He portrays an extremely strong personality who can also at times seem a little vulnerable, especially when it comes to personal relationships.
Kate Winslett has been nominated for an Oscar as best supporting actress, for her portrayal as Hoffman. Other stars of the movie include Seth Rogen, Jeff Daniels, Michael Stuhlbarg and Katherine Waterston.
While Jobs’ conflicts are highlighted more than anything in this movie, we also get some understanding of why and how he was so successful. Thanks to Sorkin’s script there’s some great dialogue.
The film is now showing in theatres around Australia.
- movie, reviews
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