Operator ★★★½

I turned on Netflix this morning to watch something. I didn't know what, but I was thinking maybe a quick 45 minute show over a film.

This film showed up in my feed.

I've seen several films with Martin Starr and a few with Mae Whitman. Mae is in my favorite film of all time (Scott Pilgrim vs. The World), and the premise sounded interesting, so I hit play.

First of all, the bad:

Through most of the film, Martin is flat and sort of unlikeable. Especially compared to Mae, who plays his wife, Emily.

A lot of the dialogue is forced and mediocre. Mae is the most natural character in the film. Several of the other actor's lines feel scripted and stilted.

Now the good:

The third act is pretty solid, if you can stay with it. Martin's character finally starts to feel like a real person, and even the interactions with Nat Faxon start to come alive. (Side note: I loved Nat in Ben and Kate, and his role in this doesn't feel even half as natural as that show. But he got better as the film went on).

The concept and graphics throughout were all nice. You can tell the film is lower budget, but they did several things to cover it up.

I LOVED the scenes that take place in the theater. I went to a show like that in Chicago several years ago, and my memories came flooding back as I watched.

I was going to give it 3 stars, but the third act really picked it up and made me enjoy it way more.

There will inevitably be comparisons to Her, but they are actually much different films.

Her is way better, for one. Bigger budget, bigger actors, great writer and director. But Operator is worth your time.