*** and 1/2 out of ****
Filmmaker Spike Jonze has been primarily a mischief maker with previous films like Being John Malkovich and Adaptation. With Her, a film he wrote and directed, it appears Jonze is growing up a bit.
This offbeat comedy/drama is about a despondent writer (Joaquin Phoenix) in the middle of a divorce who falls in love with the newly installed operating system on his computer. Yes, that's odd, but then again, the operating system does have the voice of Scarlett Johansson.
Jonze's story follows a familiar path, and the inclusion of the supposedly-plain-but-actually-pretty female friend, played by Amy Adams, makes it even more predictable as to where it's all going. No matter, because Her is quirky, thoughtful and well-acted. It's good to see Phoenix back from the brink of I'm Still Here (2010) and delivering his best performance since Walk the Line (2005).
Her is a smart meditation on loneliness as well as the disconnection of human interaction as technology advances. That is something to think about. This would great to see on a double bill with the silly and lighter 1984 comedy Electric Dreams.