Breaking News Bar
updated: 8/14/2013 5:39 PM

Biographical 'Jobs' not the Apple of your eyes

Success - Article sent! close
  • Ashton Kutcher plays Apple Computer founder Steve Jobs in the fact-based drama "Jobs."

    Ashton Kutcher plays Apple Computer founder Steve Jobs in the fact-based drama "Jobs."

  • Video: "JOBS" trailer


The founder of Apple Computers and the revolutionary inventor of everything i deserves better than this.

The story of the late Steve Jobs needed to be told by a smart and curious filmmaking team such as Aaron Sorkin and David Fincher, respectively the screenwriter and director of the amazing, fact-based movie "The Social Network."

At least then we might have been given some insights into what created Jobs, how he viewed himself and the world around him. Where did this guy come from? What made his processor tick?

In the succinctly titled "Jobs," director Joshua Michael Stern, working from a screenplay by Matt Whiteley, turns the story of Steve Jobs into formulaic underdog drama fodder:

Quirky guy with a prickly personality designs a better mousetrap, only to be smacked down by commercial forces that just don't understand him. But they'll rue the day they didn't recognize his obvious genius!

It doesn't help that Charlie Sheen replacement Ashton Kutcher portrays Jobs with broad emotional strokes, relying mostly on physically approximating Jobs' lilting gait and pensive, John F. Kennedy-like repose to communicate he's thinking. Hard.

"Jobs" opens in 2001 when Jobs takes the stage at Apple as a technological rock star. Apple employees smile and applaud their founder as he introduces a nifty little device he calls the iPod.

Flash back to 1974.

A much younger Jobs wanders barefoot around a college campus after dropping out of school. A teacher (James Woods) tells him how brilliant and driven he is. Meanwhile, his girlfriend utters complex thoughts such as "I really miss you when you're not here."

The film whisks us through the early years, when Jobs hooks up with computer wiz Woz (Josh Gad) and with a stuffy businessman named Mike Markkula (a corporate Dermot Mulroney).

Instead of focusing on what made the man, "Jobs" tells the more superficial business story of Apple.

To its credit, "Jobs" doesn't sugarcoat Jobs' personality deficiencies and horrific treatment of the people he supposedly liked. He screams and kicks his girlfriend out of the house when she announces she's pregnant. (Jobs denies he's the father, even after paternity tests suggest otherwise.)

"You're your own worst enemy!" Woz tells Jobs, highlighting the most obvious line of dialogue in the script.

The same could be said for Stern, who reduces one of the most fascinating, complicated figures in modern history into a dropout savant who changed the world by being cute.

Article Comments ()
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.