Early Apple employees comment on ‘Jobs’ bioflick starring Ashton Kutcher

Jobs, this year’s non-comedy Steve Jobs biopic, opened in theaters [Friday],” John-Michael Bond reports for TUAW.

“The film stars Ashton Kutcher and follows Jobs from his humble college days through his rise, fall and eventual return to power at the company he helped found,” Bond reports. “Reviews have been mixed on the film itself, but how do the people who were their at the beginning of Apple see the film?”

Bond reports, “Early Apple employees Daniel Kottke and Bill Fernandez spoke with Slashdot’s Vijith Assar about what Jobs got right, and wrong, about their time with the company.”

Read more in the full article here.

Vijith Assar reports for SlashDot, “Daniel Kottke [says], ‘Well, Ashton’s very good. I have no complaints with him at all, no complaints with his portrayal of Jobs. The complaint that people would rightly have about the film is that it portrays Woz as not having the same vision as Steve Jobs, which is really unfair.'”

Much more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Lynn Weiler” for the heads up.]

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30 Comments

  1. Studios love biopics, especially for living or recently deceased people. These films come with built-in  promotional campaign and often create buzz with no special effort on Studio’s part.

    There is no way filmmakers would have created two similar Steves. The movie fits fairly comfortably in to the “hero’s journey” template (the “Monomyth”), so it would have been really difficult to make Woz a second hero, especially since the title of the film wasn’t “Apple”, but “Jobs”.

    I’m curious to see how it will do at the box office. We’ll have to wait until Tuesday (HR comes out with regular numbers then).

  2. I saw it last night and thought it was fairly good. It was less about Steve Jobs as a person and more about the early history of Jobs at Apple. There were some clever transitions and Ashton Kutcher did a very good job. I would rate it as a good to see, but not a must see.

    1. I agree, Ashton did a very good job portraying SJ as well as the other cast members and their roles. I also thought the movie did a really good job exposing the “corporate mentality” of big business and how it kills great companies and innovation by putting profits first. For me, that was the story I came away with.
      Was it a great movie, no. But it really illustrates how nasty big business and boards can be when they don’t have the vision or desire that the founders of a business had. This is commom when say a someone creates a successfull business and hands it down to simbling and the business ends up failing.

      Jobs said it best when he said, “Think about it. Some very good product people invent some very good products, and the company achieves a monopoly. But after that, the product people aren’t the ones that drive the company forward anymore. It’s the marketing guys or the ones who expand the business into Latin America or whatever. Because what’s the point of focusing on making the product even better when the only company you can take business from is yourself? So a different group of people start to move up. And who usually ends up running the show? The sales guy. John Akers at IBM is the consummate example. Then one day, the monopoly expires for whatever reason. But by then the best product people have left, or they’re no longer listened to. And so the company goes through this tumultuous time, and it either survives or it doesn’t. Look at Microsoft, who’s running Microsoft? (interviewer: Steve Ballmer.) Right, the sales guy. Case closed. And that’s what happened at Apple, as well. – Steve Jobs, 2004.

  3. it’s not going to be completely real
    a good movie has to have the 3 act structure and follow the blake snyder beat sheet formula to some degree. that’s why i fall asleep watching so many indie movies. they just drag on and on

        1. So, you prefer your entertainment to be more formulaic? Cool; few people are willing to admit that.

          Art – yeah, the “A” word – isn’t about following somebody’s BS formula.

          1. I don’t want SAVE THE CAT formula movies all the times but if they turn out like that foreign film AMOUR (aka ABORE) with it’s being filmed in SOMNAROUND (where you will actually experience the sensation of sleep) then no thanks!

            1. You’re right, there weren’t nearly enough ‘splosions in Amour. And what’s with not speaking in English?!? Fucking elitist, if you ask me.

              I will admit that Blake Snyder’s filmography IS pretty impressive: “Blank Check”, “Stop Or My Mom Will Shoot”, and… um, well, I’m sure he knew what he was doing.

    1. I love those negative reports by critics who don’t even watch the film.

      It’s like doing a critique of Apple’s new iWatch, last month, when it hasn’t even been put into production, let alone been seen in the wild.

    1. Woz is currently the “technical guru and official advisor about all things Apple” for Aaron Sorkin’s movie about Steve Jobs being made by Sony. Aaron Sorkin’s entire film will be three 30 minute scenes made in real time all set before Apple product launches (it’s not going to be a typical “birth-to-death” biography). The products launches will be for the original Macintosh, NeXT and the iPod. Should be a treat!

        1. Any ideas who they should be talking to instead? Woz left Apple in 1997. The Macintosh was finished by 1994. I would think he’s kept refreshed on the topic of Apple since he lived it. Should they have picked you instead? Sorry that they didn’t pick you. 🙁

    2. To be fair, Wozniak did not have the same vision as Jobs did. All he wanted to do is to design and make really good motherboards which computer club members could use.

      He did not thought of assembling motherboard with chips and combining it with power supply, as Jobs insisted for Apple I, or to make complete PC as Apple II.

      1. … misunderstood … something. Sure … they didn’t have the SAME vision, but that doesn’t mean that – for a while, at least – they didn’t have EQUAL vision. As things progressed, Woz was not as eager as Jobs for everything to be HIS way. Early on, he was the one who worked the technical miracles – far ahead of the better-trained engineers in the field.

  4. I believe standards for acting have gone out the window. How else could I read in more than one place that Ashton Kutcher’s acting was good? It was a decent Saturday Night Live impression, at best. No depth or care in the acting. Just “look at me, I can talk kind of like Steve Jobs! Ha!”

    1. Steve Jobs was lmany great things though he was no Robert De Nirlo, Al Pacino, Daniel Day Lewis, etc.. These kind of biopics are fraught with peril especially if the treatment is just perfunctory, narrow and straight forward. You need filmmakers able to give it an artistic maybe metaphoric edge and meaning as in the 70’s golden age of films. Its a forgotten art among most story-lack, character-lack and plot-lack CG overkill filmmakers (aka Pixel Wranglers) today.

  5. Interesting. Saw the movie last night to a full house. True, that there they may be some errors portrayed, but I wasn’t privileged to witness all of Steve’s life.

    And if you have been, seen, heard or witnessed Steve’s works via a keynote, a developer’s conference, worked with him, most likely you wouldn’t care, but to have him portrayed for what he really desired to accomplish in life.

    As far as we were concerned last night, Kutcher did an excellent Job. And if anything, as was commented after the show, “it wasn’t long enough.” This movie, or his life.

  6. Some Biopics are easier to pull off than others. The more Iconic the subject, the more difficult it is to pull off. “LaBamba” about Ritchie Valens, great. The “Buddy Holly Story”, Amazing. But try doing one about the Beatles or Elvis, and they just don’t hold up, because the subjects are just too Iconic to pull off. The one exception might be “Walk the Line”. Joaquin Phoenix aced that!

    1. “…“Walk the Line”. Joaquin Phoenix aced that!”

      Agreed. I also liked Anthony Hopkins, in “Nixon”. The movie itself wasn’t great, but Hopkins was excellent. But the thing I think both of these had was, the actor wasn’t trying to look like their namesake – but act like their namesake. Also, they’re both excellent actors.

      Kutcher? Not so much.

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