But if Stern lets Jobs off the hook, Kutcher doesn't. Occasionally, to suggest inner turmoil, he'll tremble and clench his fists—that's the hammy stuff. But mostly Kutcher only hints at what might be going on behind this confounding man's ever-shifting eyes. Kutcher finds compassion without going for anything so cheap as an explanation for Jobs' bad behavior; it's a wily, understated performance.


Jobs was directed by Joshua Michael Stern; written by Matt Whiteley; and stars Ashton Kutcher, Josh Gad, Lukas Haas and Dermot Mulroney. Rated PG-13.

Jobs put a lot of himself into the products he developed. To love your MacBook, your iPod, your iPhone is to love Steve Jobs the man just a little bit, from a convenient distance. Kutcher had it harder: He had to get right inside Jobs' head, and his performance suggests it wasn't a fun place to be.

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