Beautiful Handwritten Letters

In the movie Her, Theodore has a job as a writer, but not in the traditional sense that one would normally expect. Most people would expect writers to be writings in magazines, newspapers, or writing books. But, in this future, Theodore has a job where he writes letters, and not just any letters, but love letters. He works for a company called Beautiful Handwritten Letters, and in a sense, they are hand written. Theodore speaks into a microphone and the computer records what he is saying and it makes the font on the paper look like it is handwritten.

Personally, I am unsure as to what we are supposed to think about the company. In the beginning, I think that we are supposed to be a little put off or disgusted by the fact that this is a job, especially when one hears the content of the first letter. It is a beautiful love letter for a birthday (or anniversary?) and the person it’s it supposed to be by is not even writing it. Instead, we are shown this nerdy/dorky looking man sitting in front of a computer dictating the letter.

But, as the movie goes on to explore even more weird or uncanny things, such as Samantha’s (Theodore’s operating system turned girlfriend) very existence, I think that we begin to get used to the idea of such strange things. I mean, after all, it is a semi well known company, and maybe this is like buying a greeting card.

Personally, I was not too offended or put off by this revelation. While I would be upset if I was the person to whom the letter was directed and I later found out that it wasn’t a “real” letter, I think I would still accept it a little bit, just because it seems society is a little bit more understanding of that practice in the fictional universe of that movie. The movie, I feel, makes this notion seem somewhat normal to you by introducing something even more out of this world: dating an OS. The only problem I had the company was when Theodore said that there was one couple for whom he had been writing letters for 5 years. That seemed a little strange to me, and I definitely think that the producers of the movie had intended that or they wouldn’t have put it there. It just seems amazing to me that one person, or maybe even both people in the relationship, would employ the use of a company to write letters to each other, not being able to be bothered to do it by themselves. It occurred to me that Theodore may even know these couples better than they know each other. He talked about a little gap tooth to one girl he was writing a letter to, and I just found it astounding that he remembered that. But all in all, I think the movie did a good job in how they portrayed the company.

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2 thoughts on “Beautiful Handwritten Letters

  1. You introduced some great points in the blog post Lizzie. I was a little unsure of the purpose of you post, however, as it didn’t have a clear thesis statement or argument in the first paragraph. You start by describing Theodore’s job, but then I am confused on whether the blog post if how he writes the letters, why, or if the essay is about uncanny things. All points were introduced and I struggled a little with finding how they were connected. I agree with your point that it is odd and disappointing that couples pay a third party to write intimate letters for them. You briefly discussed Samantha in the essay, and I think that maybe you could have used the discussion about Theodore’s relationship with an OS is a reflection of peoples’ disassociation with one another a little more. I also enjoyed the details you put in your essay (like the gap tooth) because those were interesting parts of the movie, and it also added to the intimate knowledge Theodore knew about his clients.

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  2. I agree with your points on just how uncanny the movie is and how it makes you feel kind of awkward. Your point of how bought love letters are accepted by society and I thought it was a very good point. I am looking at it from the view of 2014 but if everyone was buying love letters for their girlfriends then maybe if would be more normal. Similar to how we look back and find courting to be outdated. If you look at it from their perspective then everything makes a bit more sense.

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