Good writing is noticeable. It usually has a pattern too; you can spot it easily. The writing of Aaron Sorkin certainly has a pattern. His scripted movies are filled with fast-talking, quip-creating characters. Watching one of his movies is like watching a tennis match in which the players are playing with three tennis balls; each one a different idea or strand of the conversation which is verbally batted around and eventually strung together. As one who is an appreciator of great dialogue, Sorkin’s movies are always enjoyed and what is so special about Steve Jobs is that it brings his dialogue to the front.
Broken into three nearly identical segments, Steve Jobs is all about the characters and all about their interactions. It’s a simple premise and it should be reiterated that this film is not a biopic. It is about Steve Jobs, but it would be difficult to call Steve Jobs the story of the man’s life. This is a deconstruction of the man. This is a look into three (fictionalized) moments which showcased who Steve Jobs really was, presenting all of the facets of one of the most divisive characters from the twentieth century.
To do the premise of this movie justice takes a skilled cast, and the ensemble gathered together by director Danny Boyle is brilliant. Michael Fassbender really does shine in the title role and, while I wasn’t convinced he was Jobs, I was lost in his performance. Kate Winslet, Seth Rogen and Jeff Daniels compliment him in no small measure.
The ultimate compliment I can pay a film is when it becomes something other than a film: an experience. Steve Jobs is such an example. A masterfully written character piece which is brought to life by a truly talented group of actors drew me into the story and made it an ordeal to hit that pause button.
That’s what good writing can do.