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In 2013, a lot of famous icons were portrayed on film. From Walt Disney to Nelson Mandela and Jackie Robinson, there is no question that it was a successful year for biopics of some monumental human beings. One of the more modern icons, the late Apple Inc. founder Steve Jobs, had his story told through Joshua Michael Stern’s film Jobs, where he was portrayed by Ashton Kutcher.
Jobs follows the story of Steve Jobs (Kutcher), from the time that he was a college dropout in the mid-70’s, and throughout his journey to becoming one of the most successful creative minds of 20th and 21st centuries. The film plays out his relationships with colleagues such as friend and Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak (Josh Gad), early investor Mike Markkula (Dermont Mulroney), and aggressive board member Arthur Rock (J.K. Simmons). It also takes note of the different products and struggles Apple faced throughout the 80’s and 90’s, until achieving its true greatness at the turn of the century.
I found that Jobs had a few issues. In an attempt to tell the story of Steve Jobs’ life, a lot of what is shown is activity within the Apple company, while at the same time trying to explain Jobs’ personal life. The scenes involving his family, lovers and children always felt too random; at time so much that we go from Jobs finding out he has a daughter, and then not seeing her until she is a teenager. The plot in general tended to jump around a lot, as if it were always searching for a way to find its footing.
The acting was solid, but not perfect. Although Ashton Kutcher may have been the perfect look-alike to take on the role of Jobs, his performance often felt forced and did not completely sell me. The supporting roles were what I enjoyed most, with a bit more believable performances from Josh Gad, Dermont Mulroney, J.K. Simmons and Matthew Modine.
I think that the highlight of the film, and the thing that kept me most interested, was seeing how they would tell the story of Apple, one of the highest grossing, most popular companies of this generation. The retro tech pieces, old advertisements and cool soundtrack really set the mood as the film progressed, as well as Apple itself.
Overall, Jobs was not one of the brightest biopics, but the story it tells is interesting enough to keep you watching, and at least a bit intrigued.
My Reel Rating: 6.0/10
Written by Josh Sazin on January 8th, 2014