Jul 15

Revving up for the next Steve Jobs movie

Thank you, Aaron Sorkin.

The official trailer for the new Steve Jobs movie (release date: October 9) is out, and I have to say: it looks pretty rich.

We mustn’t get carried away — it’s only a trailer, after all — but the movie sure looks like it lives up to the Sorkin standard.

Personally, I can’t imagine a more difficult screenwriting task. How does one take such a complicated, important life and distill it into 90 minutes’ worth of dialog and images?

Sorkin’s job was to pick the moments that tell a story as they reveal the nature of the man. And historical accuracy isn’t exactly the highest priority — creating a great movie experience is.

I can already hear the knee-jerk reactions: “But Fassbender doesn’t look anything like Steve Jobs!”

Correct. And I, for one, am relieved by that.

To me, it’s the difference between a cheap Vegas Beatles rip-off band and The Fab Faux. One tries to “be” The Beatles, right down to their Sgt. Pepper wardrobe. The latter is a group of accomplished, killer musicians who glorify the music, not the mustaches. One approach is frivolous, the other is quality.

I was one of the few who enjoyed the last Jobs movie with Ashton Kutcher. Not because it was a cinematic masterpiece (which it wasn’t), but simply because it was fun to see a movie about Steve Jobs.

However, I did have to look past the movie’s obsession with recreating Jobs physically. Kutcher’s bouncy walk felt like a cartoon version of the real thing. It was unnecessary to try cloning Steve, and I thought it detracted from the movie overall.

So I’m happy to see that this new movie aims to capture the spirit of Steve, without being slavish to Steve’s physical appearance. What’s important about Steve’s story is the power of his vision, and his ability to bring together so many different talents to change the world.

To refresh your memory, compare this trailer for the Kutcher movie — written by a first-time screenwriter — to the one above, written by one of the most acclaimed screenwriters of our time. The difference is stark.

I think I know where I’ll be on October 9th.

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  • Samanjj

    Let’s see if it can beat pirates of Silicon Valley.

  • Esteban Proaño

    Someone on the Macrumors forum said:

    “Daniel Day Lewis playing Lincoln, now THAT is proof you can have your cake and eat it too. Phenomenal acting and a spot-on look. Shouldn’t have to settle for great acting with no resemblance, or vice versa.”

    I agree. I wish they at least dyed Fassbenders hair, shaped his eyebrows and gave him colored contact lenses so he at least resembled Steve a LITTLE BIT. Makes it more real

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  • Ause Ekel

    Nothing is better than Noah Wyle in Pirates, sorry. And not because he looked like Jobs but because Jobs himself loved his performance, Apple’s workers loved it and he did act and sound like Jobs. Fassbender not looking like Jobs isn’t an issue IMO. The problem is that I can’t see Jobs on screen. I see a good actor playing a role of a jerk who happened to be a genius. But this man isn’t Jobs, he’s someone else. Let’s wait for the whole movie. IMO, it won’t bring anything new about the guy, it’s just a better produced biography.

  • ksegall

    I totally agree that “it won’t bring anything new about the guy.” Let’s face it — Steve’s life has been analyzed, taken apart and put together again more than just about anyone in recent memory. The person Steve was — his personality and his accomplishments — are there for everyone to see. What we’re going to get here is a movie based on this character, and written to provide a couple hours of entertainment.

    And that’s fine with me, as long as they make a good movie.

  • Ause Ekel

    I agree, if it’s a good movie I’m fine with it =) The problem is how they will convince people that it’s worth watching this one more time. We all know everything about Jobs, why should we watch this? Seeing this trailer, it just seems a good cast, directed by a great director. They have to do a new trailer that shows what’s special about this one, otherwise, we’ll have another flop. And show more scenes with Fassbender because so far he isn’t playing Jobs. The audience wants to recognize the guy on screen, it’s a movie about Steve Jobs, Universal can’t avoid that, unfortunately.

  • pMWd

    When i look at Fassbender in this trailer, i can see a passionate guy with charisma, so i think i can easily overcome the look issue. By the way, Jesse Eisenberg not looking like Zuckerberg wasn’t an issue either.

  • Fassbender is on top of his game. I think his performance will be awesome, but only if Boyle managed to pull this one of. The last one I’m more uncertain of.

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  • talkRAYdio

    Just saw it 2 days ago – have you written about it since you’ve seen it Ken? Very interested to hear your take on it.

    *SPOILER ALERT* – Would also love to know if that ending scene with his daughter and the picture was accurate or just hollywood

  • Wow, you’re really mining the old posts today. Well done!

    Yes, I just saw it a couple of days ago. I look at it two ways. As a movie, it was terrific. Great writing, acting, directing. As a representation of the real Steve Jobs, not so much. As one would expect from a movie, the goal was entertainment, and not a celebration of an amazing life.

    I’m pretty sure the ending scene was bogus (as were most of the scenes, actually!). But I really don’t know all the facts surrounding the Lisa saga, and I’d hate to lead you astray.

  • talkRAYdio

    thanks, that helps.

    I loved that last scene.

    my radio show is back next year (taking some time with my son =) ) , really look forward to reconnecting and having you on the show again

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