Jobs doesn’t deliver

Without Steve Jobs we’d probably have no iPhones, iPods or iMacs. Assistant Professor of Innovation Management Pedro de Faria believes that the movie Jobs doesn’t show what great work Steve Jobs did for Apple. On the contrary, he is portrayed as a burden to the company.

‘True, Steve Jobs wasn’t known for his social skills, but Jobs leaves out some of his vital contributions to Apple. The movie shows that he knew what consumers wanted and how to apply this. For instance, the computers were consumer-friendly and had a unique design. However, it doesn’t feature anything about the fact that he was a pioneer when it came to the use of a mouse.’

Engaging moment

De Faria believes that the movie makers wanted to cover too much ground. They focus on both Jobs’s personal life and business life, and cram all that information into a two-hour movie. As a result, a lot of questions arise that remain unanswered. ‘During the first part you see that Steve Jobs rejected his daughter Lisa. Fifteen years later you see Steve and Lisa in an engaging moment, but you have no idea what happened in between, thus making it all very confusing. I only know what happened because I’ve read his biography.’

Assistant Professor of Innovation Management Pedro de Faria / Foto Pepijn van den Broeke

Assistant Professor of Innovation Management Pedro de Faria / Photo Pepijn van den Broeke

Having read the book, De Faria knows Steve Jobs suffered personal problems which influenced his way of thinking, but they are not discussed in the movie. ‘He was adopted, which is mentioned very briefly during the movie. This experience really shaped him, though. He believed that he was the chosen one because his parents adopted him. This made him very confident.’

Financial problems

If Jobs had focussed solely on either the personal side or the business side of his life, it would have left more room to fully explain his work. ‘Jobs was sent away from Apple for several years, during which time he became successful as the founder of NeXT and the CEO of Pixar. During his absence Apple didn’t produce anything new and faced financial problems, so they brought Jobs back. Afterwards, Apple became famous for their iPhones, iPods and iPads, not so much for their computers. Many aspects of this story are not covered.’

The movie has been heavily criticised and some reviewers even said that Ashton Kutcher’s performance as Jobs was the only good thing about it. However, De Faria believes that even Kutcher doesn’t do a brilliant job. Aside from the uncomfortable attempts at humour, the story is disjointed. ‘It tries to be a documentary by providing a lot of facts, but you expect more depth from a movie.’

The final verdict: read the book.