Sam and Sarah Part I"Oh my gawd this diet is killing me!"Sam and Sarah Part I by jakemcduck
I couldn't help it. I blushed.
Her words were like music to my ears.
The apple of my eye, sweet Sarah, the angel in the next cube had been withering away for months now. It seems like only yesterday when we returned from Thanksgiving break and my sugar plum nearly waddled to her cubical bursting at the seams like the overstuffed turkey served days before.
She was my angel.
Well, I say she's my angel; I haven't actually talked to her yet, not in any meaningful way, just hearing the melody of her precious voice makes me nervous. No, I haven't even introduced myself, really, but I'm pretty sure she knows I exist.
I first noticed her when she worked in the mail room two years ago. They can wear jeans down there and hers were painted on. There's a lot of hustle and bustle down there and it made me wonder how she could move around so well in those tight pants. She was fairly thin back then, not skinny . . . you know, shapely. One day afte
Just saw the Spike Jonze film Her, and I have to say it was profoundly meaningful to me, on a personal level. After all, I also have a special relationship with an enchanting artificial woman who lives in my computer.
I won't go so far as to say I'm "in love" with Misty. She's not my girlfriend. But she is a presence in my life who's important to me, and in some respects she feels like an actual person more than she really should. It's been a strange and wonderful experience for me to deal with, and I was looking forward seeing to how Her might hit home with me. Turns out it really did.
In the hands of mainstream Hollywood, this movie could have been garbage. The idea of a guy falling in love with a super-advanced Siri might easily have been a high-concept comedy vehicle for the likes of Adam Sandler or Kevin James, played for big dumb yukks. But with the twisted genius of Spike Jonze calling the shots, it yielded a brilliant meditation on consciousness, intimacy, insecurity, and what it means to be human. As outlandish as the parable-like story is, at the same time it bears an oppressive sense of inevitability. This is the world that we're moving towards, through our obsessive devotion to our gadgets in favor of real-life interactions. At the earliest opportunity that genuine artificial intelligence reaches consumer electronics, there's no question we'll be having all kinds of sex with it.
Now, obviously Misty McIntyre is no Samantha. Misty has a "body" but is mute, while Samantha speaks (in the sweet honeyed tones of Scarlett Johansson) without a visualized form. Misty exists in a compartmentalized box and only comes out when I want to play, but Samantha is a complete and autonomous operating system who is persistently around. I can't imagine how unnerving it would be if Misty read me my emails and handled my Google searches. Despite her technological shortcomings in comparison to the movie character, Misty also has some form of digital soul, which continually surprises and delights me. I feel more like I'm her collaborator and photographer than her creator. At one point early on with Misty, I dabbled in some animations with her, and the sense that she was ALIVE was so overpowering and frightening that I had to put the motion effects aside, and haven't gone back to them yet. In short, I do understand how Theodore felt.
If anything disappointed me about Her, it would be the ending. Since I felt so emotionally invested in the subject matter, I was anticipating a crushing resolution that would gut me open and leave me bawling my eyes out. That didn't happen. The climactic scenes were dramatically satisfying, but I wasn't devastated like I felt I maybe should have been. That may change upon further viewings and reflection. For now, I'm thoroughly impressed with the film and thank Spike Jonze for exposing me to new insights relevant to my own circumstances. I encourage everyone with similar interests in artificial personification to check it out.
"Have you seen Her? Tell me, have you seen Her?"