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FILM FANS: 'Jobs' is good, but disappointing

EDITOR’S NOTE: Film Fans features local residents reviewing the movie of the week: “Jobs.” Want to be a film fan? Email features@gwinnettdailypost.com.

2 and 1/2 out of 4 stars

Since I teach high school computer science, I thought this would be a good movie to go see, since Steve Jobs had such an influence on the whole computer/electronics industry. For me, the movie seemed to go out of its way to accentuate both the bad and good qualities of Jobs but never gives the viewer much of a conclusion. I felt the same way about the movie as how they portrayed Jobs.

I appreciated the fact that he was interested in revolution of computers and put innovation and quality above the drive to make a huge profit. On the flip side, he seemingly lived only for conquering the next electronics challenge while not really developing meaningful relationships.

I don’t know that much about the man so I cannot comment on the veracity of the biopic, but it left me neither liking the man nor disliking him and that is how I felt about the movie in the end. I’d wait to see it on DVD later.

— J. P. Zinn, Lawrenceville

3 out of 4 stars

After reading some of the critics’ reviews of this movie, I have to admit that my expectations were not that good, as they were mostly less than complimentary. For me, however, I suppose because I grew up in the age of developing technology going back to the early ’70s and also having worked in the industry myself for more than 30 years, I found it to be an interesting, absorbing and entertaining biopic.

The story is about the early career of Steve Jobs who was, in my opinion, one of the most fascinating innovators and creative entrepreneurs of the late 20th century who, together with fellow college dropout and self-taught friend, Steve Wozniak, founded Apple Computers. Working out of a garage, they created, developed and introduced one of the first personal computers to the public, and changed forever the way we do everyday things. Unlike Microsoft (Bill Gates) who bellied up to “Big Blue” IBM, Jobs and Wozniak did things their own way, and in the process became amazingly successful in spite of the competition.

As Jobs would say, there is “one more thing.” He co-founded Pixar Animation Studios (“Toy Story,” “Up,” “Monsters, Inc.,” etc.), after buying it from Disney (a fact not mentioned in this film), and also developed the first use of the computer mouse, as well as integrating the first Graphic User Interface (GUI) into the Macintosh operating system, which was later copied and used by Microsoft in their Windows operating system. Later on he created the iPod, and all of those other “i” products we all know and many of us use every day.

Ashton Kutcher as Jobs and Josh Gad as Wozniak both have a remarkable physical resemblance to the characters they play, but it’s Kutcher that stands out in his role as he portrays the hard driving — often obsessed — genius of Jobs, and also reveals the turmoil and sacrifice he suffered along the way in order to accomplish his dreams.

Not a movie for everyone, but for me as a fan of this amazing character who flourished in an age of rebels and iconoclast’s while doing things his way, and only his way, it was extremely enjoyable. RIP Steve Jobs: Feb. 24, 1955 — Oct. 5, 2011.

— Steve Kalberg, Lawrenceville

1 and 1/2 out of 4 stars

Let me begin by saying I haven’t seen Ashton Kutcher do anything dramatic since “Butterfly Effect,” so I was really looking forward to seeing him in Jobs’ portrayal. (Kutcher had “the walk” down pat).

The film was more in a documentary style than entertaining, and two extremes to Jobs were presented endlessly: His dedication to big and creative thinking and his personality flaws, to put it kindly. The repetition of his driving into the handicapped spot at his own company is a thumbnail portrayal of his tendencies, combined with his work and personal love/hate relationships.

I was disappointed that there were huge gaps. Since the movie was trying to be more like a documentary, it ignored his significant years after his diagnosis, as well as the iPhone. (Giving you a heads up, it’s the earlier years). I won’t sound the spoiler alert about his family, but he wasn’t with his family … and suddenly he was, and his daughter was older and suddenly there was a son, too. I felt like I was waking up from a coma and facing a new reality.

Overall, a little disappointing.

— Cathryn Veal, Lawrenceville