This week’s Sunday Script Club read is Her by Spike Jonze. I haven’t seen the film, so this was a true first read kind of experience, which was really refreshing and definitely something I’d like to do more of. I went into this screenplay with pretty much next-to-no knowledge of what it was about other than Joaquin Phoenix plays the protagonist and it’s got something to do with a computer.
In fact, let’s back track a little here. The reason why this was one of the options on last week’s vote (the outvoted option was Beasts of the Southern Wild) is because I attended the Adobe Experience Festival, a virtual digital marketing / AI conference as part of my day job. It was really interesting and there was a lot of talk about the future of AI, where we are currently with AI, and to be honest - it was kind of mind-blowing. I had a vague idea that Her involved AI, but I didn’t know to what extent.
This screenplay depicts a love story in its truest form. Truth be told, I’m not a love story kind of gal. I mean, I grew up watching 90s rom-coms and they’ll never get old but beyond that, I’m not about romance or stories about romantic relationships but I’d put this screenplay in the same category as something like Blue Valentine (such a beautiful film). Relationships are deeply complicated. Humans are even more complicated. This screenplay is a great insight into the human condition, and our evolving or devolving relationships with one another in an age of constant development in technology and AI.
The balance of exposition to dialogue was something I really enjoyed in this week’s read. With my own screenplays, I always feel as though they’re a little too exposition heavy, and I love reading screenplays to see how other writers balance out / juggle their exposition and dialogue. Something else that I thought was interesting in this story that Theodore himself (protagonist), was kind of his own antagonist - as a lot of us are, but this is rarely depicted in such an honest way on screen.
What did you think of this week’s Sunday Script Club read? Head over to IG (@SundayScriptClub) to let me know what you thought.