Written by Melissa Allen, who you can follow on Twitter at @melissajournal

Joaquin Phoenix delivers a stunning, moving and wholesome performance in Her. This film truly shows the power of love – it doesn’t matter who the love is shared by, all that matters is that this film shows you that prejudice is so overrated.

Her follows Theodore (Phoenix) after his messy and ultimately defeating divorce from his wife, Catherine (Rooney Mara). He feels constantly lonely and melancholic, and his job writing love letters isn’t helping him move on. Despite his friends telling him to start dating again and live his life, Theodore just isn’t ready – not until he meets Samantha. Samantha (voiced by Scarlett Johansson) is an OS (operating system), and was purchased by Theodore to help him with his writing and to keep him company too. However, Samantha becomes more than an assistant and a metaphorical shoulder to cry on, she becomes someone who Theodore falls very much in love with…

The passion that has gone into making this film is wonderful – the thoughtful monologues, the shy, caring and funny mannerisms of Theodore, and the outstanding voice performance of Johansson as Samantha truly takes your breath away.

The first and most noticeable thing about this film that makes it so perfect is the cinematography. It has an indie film feeling, almost like few people worked on it and cared so much about it, and you feel all the closer to the characters and the story as a result. If it were to be filmed in the way a big Hollywood blockbuster is, it would not have the same feeling of inclusion as a member of the audience, and you would most likely not feel like part of the story yourself. The way Phoenix owns the role of Theodore and how Johansson owns Samantha’s role plays perfectly into this way of filming, as both characters are a perfect match.

The beautiful aesthetic of the movie's cinematography and the charmingly thoughtful monologues go hand-in-hand and cannot be praised highly enough. Theodore’s character has been through so much, and to be able to speak freely and happily to this OS system that he develops a charming relationship with is just a pleasure to listen to. The words chosen, the stunning delivery by Phoenix to explain why he loves Samantha – and the reactions of the friends he has around him which involve inclusion and happiness that Theodore has found someone, brings a sense of relief and pride seeing Theodore introduce Samantha to his friends. There is no judgement from his friends and that is truly wonderful to watch on screen.

One scene that deserves its own paragraph, is the scene in which Theodore takes Samantha to a little cabin in the woods (as she can see everything he sees through a little camera he always has on him) for her to see snow and other places, rather than the city. In the cabin, all we hear, instead of music for the audience’s behalf rather than music the characters cannot hear, we get a beautiful song played by Theodore and sung through by Samantha. Here, here is the part the audience falls in love with them both – if they haven’t already. It simply shows love - pure love - and an enjoyment of each-other’s company in the midst of snowfall and tall trees.

This film cannot be praised enough for its phenomenal acting from the main characters, the beautiful filming and cinematography, and its outstanding monologues. If you haven’t seen it already, put it on your list and watch immediately.

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