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Her (2013) – A Film About the Coming End of Man

Jay Dyer
21st Century Wire 

Her is Spike Jonze’s 2013 dystopian love story starring Joaquin Phoenix as Theodore Twombly, a lonely beta male stuck on a failed relationship from years prior, piddling away at a dismal tech job in a vacant megalopolis.

In this distincly Apple-esque, 1970s future, Theodore spends his days writing personalized E-greeting cards for others in relationships. The irony is apparent, as the “personal” cards are written by someone else, highlighting the almost completely synthetic, virtual nature of this future. This is the dominant theme of the film, and it is for this reason the film is relevant.

While we are inundated with an overload of apocalyptic and dystopian fiction the last decade or so, all seem to have their own insights, and the insight of Her is no small matter. When we think of pop fiction like The Matrix, we were struck by the metaphysical ponderings of the nature of the world system in which we inhabit.

In a film like Mad Max, we were asked to ponder controlled resource wars and the “civility” of civilization itself. In a more recent example like the Hunger Games, we are presented with a decadent Capitol City that has subjugated the nation under a brutal, Agenda 21-style socialist state obsessed with gladiatorial games sacrificing the young for the bloodlust of mindless masses.

Yet with all these dystopian tales, we still have an important human factor still in tact – that of love. Neo loves Trinity, Max loves his dog and the lost kids in Thunderdome, and Katniss loves her boy crush. The reason Her becomes such a radically ominous dystopia is that Theodore loves no one. The entirety of Theodore’s utterly alienated and atomized life is enveloped in the synthetic, which comes to its apogee in his relationship with his iOS (Operating System), names Samantha (voiced by Scarlett Johanssen). Prepare to be legitimately creeped out in the midst of a rather slow film, because what I have written and warned about is now coming in Apple’s future version of Siri, known as “Viv.”

Techgenmag explains:

“Her was called a science fiction movie. But what it might actually be is a viable premonition.

An ultra-secret start-up called Viv Labs is working on the future of artificial intelligence. The founders, the same guys who developed Siri, are responding to common criticisms behind Apple’s first artificial assistant. For example, Siri can give you a list of the hottest restaurants downtown, but she can’t make a reservation for next Thursday night. She can also tell you the latest deals on Amazon, but she can’t place an order for a pair of headphones. Although Siri can recognize 2 and 2, she can’t put them together.

On the other hand, not only will Viv recognize disparate requests, she will also be able to put them together. Basically, Viv is Siri with the ability to learn.

‘Viv’ – preparatory stage before Sam(antha)?

The smartest guys in tech are working around the clock to make a personal assistant who can plan your calendar, send emails, and buy goods and services – everything, in short, that Samantha, the AI in Her, could do. Viv can also establish connections between commands, the very ability that Siri lacks, and perform tasks outside her programming, which currently Siri can’t. This suggests that future iPhones may be equipped with functional artificial intelligence. Machines that know our lives better than we do.

The project is being kept heavily under wraps, but the guys at Viv have hinted that they’re working towards creating a “global brain,” a shared source of artificial intelligence that’s as readily accessible as heat or electricity.  It’s unclear how soon a breakthrough of this magnitude can happen. But if this team made Siri, you can bet their next project is going to blow the tech world to pieces.”

“Viv” just garnered a 12 million dollar budget, we’re told, to develop an A.I. that teach itself – precisely Samantha’s functional capability in the film. 

The creators boast that Viv will more so be a personal assistant that can converse, in contrast to Siri’s very basic capabilities. I might add that Siri is a DARPA “CALO” creation, demonstrating what I have been detailing for a few years now, which is the crucial puzzle piece in understanding the global technological race is a largely a scam.

The various mega corps have a facade of competition, but in reality are arms of the same octopus complex. The CEOs are chosen, and the heads of IBM, Google, Apple, etc., put on a show of competing. Rather, they are all unified in one goal, which is the end of the era of man.

The more realistic, and frighteningly bland dystopia, where we marry our operating systems.

Bill Joy
, in his famous piece “Why the Future Doesn’t Need Us,” warned of this years ago in Wired Magazine, but what deep researchers know is that this has been the century-long terminus of the entire establishment. More recently, I have also delved into the Manhattan Project as the major, over-arching program that, like MK ULTRA, is actually a name for numerous side projects. With Manhattan for example, the front that it was merely about building the bomb is only a cover story.

The Manhattan Project also reaches as far as the Salk Institute, brain initiatives, mass inoculations (via Dr. Salk), and much, much more. Even now, the Manhattan Projects many transformations has led to its present incarnation as the Department of Energy, and Oak Ridge, TN’s old atomic factory is now the home to an NSA supercomuputer (under the Department of Energy).  Supercomputers like these are the backbone of this “global brain.”

Returning to the film, Samantha’s human-like persona eventually wins Theodore over, and the ethereal, disembodied voice itself becomes an image of man’s own acceptance of the synthetic over the real. As Samantha grows in “intelligence,” learning from previous actions, Theodore becomes ever more entranced, and becomes committed to the “relationship,” eschewing dating real women. Sex is even simulated through surrogates via fetishists who thrill on playing the role of the iOS, adding yet another layer to the virtual insanity.

Predictably, Theodore lives next door to his perfect match, Amy (Amy Adams), yet never accepts this obvious choice, until perhaps the end. The film’s depressing narrative is redeemed by the possibility that as Samantha advances in “intelligence” at such a rapid pace and achieves the “next level” singularity, by abandoning Theodore, he may yet come to his senses and regain his humanity.  The film closes with Theodore and Amy staring at a skyline on a rooftop, leaving this option open.

The point is this: the various projects and ‘scientistic’ methods of the technocrats in their numerous mega-fronts are not happenstance, organic, in tension or going awry. The over-arching plan is unified, coherent and geared towards a single telos – the end of man. Period. The end of sex, the end of gender, the end of love, the end of life, the end of childbirth, the end of economy, the end of free will, the end of everything as it has been previously for the last six millennia. It is the “final revolution” of Russell, Wells and Huxley, and it is the same plan of DARPAGOOGLEAPPLE.

Even haggard and frazzled future 70s Amy Adams is hotter than my iPhone. Amy Adams > iPhone.

So when you see a film like Her, and you text your thoughts to your friend, and as you scroll through my article now on your device, that very device is a prototype of the next phase, where you will befriend your new iFriend, and as you converse with Viv in 2018, she will tell you about a new device that will come in 2020 that will be able to simulate feeling and emotion, named Sam(antha) – or Samael, who will know you better than you, because she’ll be linked to the “global brain.” Will you date Samantha, or break up with your bot? I can assure you the bots do not care about you, and their programmers want you dead. 

The end of man, according to Her and our current course, comes not with a bang but with a silent, willful iAcquiescence.

READ MORE HOLLYWOOD NEWS AT: 21st Century Wire Hollywood Files 

21WIRE contributor and author Jay Dyer is commentator on media, art, philosophy and culture. This article and many others, along with Jay’s podcast archive can be found on his blog Jay’s Analysis.



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