Love in the Information Age: Her

Mr. Rhapsodist

Her is one of those films that doesn’t quite fit the usual genre molds. According to most trailers, it’s a romantic comedy with a dash of science fiction. In truth, it’s a science fiction romance with some great comedy.

Her is the story of Theodore Twombly (Joaquin Phoenix), a writer who can express others’ emotions through handwritten letters but has trouble doing so himself. As his divorce to his wife Catherine (Rooney Mara) is finalized, Theodore begins a relationship with his new Operating System, a pleasant-sounding and ever-evolving AI named Samantha (voiced by Scarlett Johansson). What follows is an awkward romance between Theodore and Samantha, as the two try to bridge the gap between the physical and mental. But issues emerge, stemming from Theodore’s emotional distance and Samantha’s excitement at being an AI that grows beyond her original programming. The conflict is internal, as Samantha’s lack of a body makes…

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