Danny Boyle (Slumdog Millionaire) and screenwriter Aaron Sorkin (The Social Network) open an unconventional window into the life of Steve Jobs. Michael Fassbender is the Apple genius, Seth Rogen is co-founder Steve Wozniak and Kate Winslet is Jobs' long-suffering assistant Joanna Hoffman. Based on the biography by Walter Isaacson.
The film is divided into three different eras, each depicting a key Apple product launch and the multiple conflicts Jobs succumbed to from family and colleagues. 1984 sees a voice demo of the Apple Macintosh, but a technical failure threatens to derail the entire showcase. 1988 sees the launch of the NeXT Computer, from the new company Jobs' founded. 1998 sees the launch of the iMac, a technological game-changer.
Best Supporting Actress (Winslet) at the 2016 BAFTA Awards; Best Supporting Actress (Winslet) and Best Screenplay at the 2016 Golden Globes
Even without its Ashton Kutcher-led predecessor, this Steve Jobs biopic would likely have suffered from the perception that there may be nothing left to say about the much-discussed Apple innovator. Thanks to the specific talent involved in the film, it does not live down to this perception at all.
There's undeniable craftsmanship here, especially in Fassbender's confident and transformative performance, but Sorkin's script fails to shout and quip its way to anything approaching dramatic vibrancy.
Racing in high gear from start to finish, Danny Boyle's electric direction temperamentally complements Sorkin's highly theatrical three-act study, which might one day be fascinating to experience in a staged setting.