Friday, August 30, 2013

Who said ‘Jobs’ is a Job-done-Bad?

Just keep going. Show me more. Don’t end. Let time run slow. I prayed, gripping myself at the edge of the seat and watching intently.

And then I saw him sitting there, in front of the recording studio microphone. I almost left a chuckle. I knew exactly what he was going to speak. As he started speaking, I recited the entire dialogue in my head- some of my most favorite lines ever written…

Lack of context? Umm… Let me rewind.


Time: 6 hours ago
Location: Animation Lab, AJK MCRC, Jamia Millia Islamia

It’s the tea break in the afternoon session. I am checking my facebook updates. I find this update from PVR Pictures announcing the reduced show rates on Thursdays at the various PVR Cinemas in Delhi/NCR. An evening show for just 125 bucks at PVR Premiere, Select Citywalk, Saket? Wow! But how? I check the show timings and seat status. There is availability and there is a show for Jobs at 6.15 PM. Can I make it after leaving college at 5? I ask a couple of my friends, if they were free, and/or if they were willing to join me. Not getting a positive response, I drop the movie idea. Anyways, I won’t be able to make it to the theatre, book tickets and be seated in just an hour, I thought. How wrong I was…things were going to be so different this evening!

As it turned out, I was able to reach the venue and book tickets 25 minutes prior to the show time. Some people are going to kill me if they find out I am watching this film without them! But then, this is Jobs! The ‘Steve Jobs’ biopic! And I have already waited a week! On having read some really bad reviews for the film and hardly anybody across the world having written anything good about the film, I had almost given up on spending money to watch this movie. Also, the reviews made sure that even if I go and watch this film, I would be doing so with really low expectations out of it. Well, thank God I read those reviews! Now I hate those reviewers!

And so at quarter past six, I am seated at the more than 50% empty Audi 3 of the PVR Cinemas at Select Citywalk, Saket. 25 minutes post the scheduled show start time, the commercials, trailers and the all-famous-disgusting-no-smoking ad made way for the CBFC certificate of Jobs. Finally I am watching this, I smiled in triumph.

Reading the official biography of Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson over 1.5 years back, talking about him and his crazy ideas to anyone and everyone who would listen, making a huge presentation in college about Apple, frantically looking for his trademark black turtleneck at all stores I went to, comparing myself to him, going nuts over him and his ideas, researching each and everything about his life, about Apple, about Pixar, watching all the Pixar films, writing articles about him, crowding my bulletin board with his quotes and pictures, getting hold of Pirates of Silicon Valley a week back, and going crazy to the extent of considering to not submit my final project and be a dropout of college- that’s my craze for Steve Jobs! And after all this, I wasn’t expecting that this film was going to show me something that I already didn’t know.


The reviews I read said there was too much focus on Ashton Kutcher rather than the story. Well, isn’t he the story? They said the film was cluttered here and there with some of Jobs’s best known dialogues. Bad scripting, they said. I, as a Jobs fan, was in fact looking forward to hearing all those awesome dialogues that he said. They couldn’t have missed the John Sculley and Pepsi one at any cost (Do you want to sell sugared water for the rest of your life or you want a chance to change the world?), they didn’t forget ‘insanely great’, ‘1000 songs in your pocket’ - some of the quotes I was really looking forward to hear. They didn’t miss the detailed portrayal of Jobs and Wozniak’s friendship, the amazingly awesome ‘1984’ ad (Why 1984 won’t be like ‘1984’?) and the naming of Apple Computers as ‘Apple Computers’.

My Bulletin Board with all the Steve Jobs pictures and quotes
But I did look forward to seeing the Macintosh launch where apparently people went so crazy that they started breaking and throwing the auditorium seats and Steve is said to have had the broadest smile ever. I wanted to see something about Pixar, but they completely missed it. I wanted to hear ‘I didn’t know it then, but getting fired from Apple was the best thing that ever happened to me’, but apparently the filmmakers decided to keep the story till the iPod launch and not reach the Stanford Commencement Address of 2005. They managed to include a dialogue mentioning Chiat-Day, Apple’s only advertising agency, but they thought just the one angry call to Bill Gates would suffice (intentional, is it?) Although they did mention interim CEO, I would have loved it had they mentioned how the interim became the ‘i’ of the iMac, iPod, iPhone, iPad and all the other Apple products. They showed Lisa as the computer after Apple II, and they mentioned Lisa was Steve’s daughter, but they never mentioned that Steve named the computer Lisa after his daughter or how he got to be in talking terms with her. The film completely missed out on the personal life of Jobs, his search for his birth parents and sister, his family and of course, his love for minimalist and simplistic sophistication.

Probably incorporating so much into a 2-hour film would just be impossible and in the process the essence of the shown things would be lost. I loved the fact that the director didn’t pace through key moments fast. Every moment has its essence, the value is not lost. Probably because I have read the biography and have researched so much, I know that so many things have been missed out. But if I think about it, probably because I am a film student and because I have read the biography and researched so much, I am able to appreciate the film for the insanely great job the director (Joshua Michael Stern) has done. I am freshly in love with Steve Jobs again!


“How was the film? Answer without any prejudices”, my fun-loving intellectual friend-cum-mentor, who is well aware of my Steve Jobs craze, asked me.
“Awesome! I loved it!” I replied exhilarated.

As the Exit doors opened and the end credits started to roll, the auditorium emptied. I stood at my seat, smiling profusely to myself. I slowly exited the hall and told myself, ‘This calls for a detailed blog entry tonight!’ I fought the urge to buy the ticket for the next show of the film beginning in about 15 minutes. Who the hell said this was not a job well done?

In case you were wondering what my most favourite lines are but forgot about it as you went through the entire post, here it is:

Apple's Think Different Campaign. Image Source: Google

6 comments :

  1. Hah! I take it that you liked the movie!
    That was a great review written by a great fan. Good Job!

    ReplyDelete
  2. read your first entry on jobs and your entry after a very long time! reading entry was nostalgic! hehehe
    and reading jobs was fun!
    great follower cum fan! what do i say?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hahaha...Thanks Anirudh!
      Glad to see your comment here ;)

      Delete
  3. A review that can inspire a not-so-big fan of Jobs to become one and watch the movie!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hahahaha...now that's a great compliment! I wish I had known who the face behind 'unknown' is! ;)

      Delete

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