BIOGRAPHY (from Wikipedia)
Spike Jonze is an American director, producer, screenwriter and actor, whose work includes music videos, commercials, film and television. He started his feature film directing career with Being John Malkovich (1999) and Adaptation (2002), both written by Charlie Kaufman, and then started movies with screenplays of his own with Where the Wild Things Are (2009) and Her (2013).
Jonze is well known for his music video collaborations with Fatboy Slim, Weezer, Beastie Boys, and Björk. He was a co-creator and executive producer of MTV’s Jackass.
He has been nominated for four Academy Awards: Best Director for Being John Malkovich, and Best Picture, Best Original Screenplay and Best Original Song (“The Moon Song”) for Her. He won the Golden Globe Award for Best Screenplay, the Writers Guild of America Award for Best Original Screenplay, and the 2014 Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay for Her.
1999 – Being John Malkovich
2002 – Adaptation
2009 – Where the Wild Things Are
2013 – Her
|Do The Right Thing||1989||The rising temperatures on the hottest day also raises racial tensions as the film descends from feel-good comedy to a tragic and brutal crescendo. A Spike Lee masterpiece.||4.5||Gordon|
|Crooklyn||1994||Spike Lee's semi-autobiographical family drama is a stunningly presented look at 70s Brooklyn and the people that inhabit it. Though the story doesn't hit as hard as you might hope.||3.5||Gordon|
|Summer of Sam||1999||Click to see our detailed review.||3.5||Gordon|
|Being John Malkovich||1999||A wonderful script from Charlie Kaufman is amazingly brought to life by Jonze. Turning the surreal into a surprisingly real film.||4.5||Gordon|
|Adaptation||2002||The lines of film making and reality are blurred again in another excellent Kaufman's screenplay. Jonze does an amazing job of crafting the normally skinny, hyperactive Nicolas Cage into a depressive, overweight introvert.||4||Gordon|
|Inside Man||2006||Even when you know the brilliant twist ending this is still a great heist thriller which shines most when Owen and Washington share scenes. Only the odd subplot involving Jodie Foster's character brings it down a little.||4||Mat|
|Inside Man||2006||An interesting twist, but just a little too generic.||3.5||Gordon|
|Where the Wild Things Are||2009||A beautiful film that is true to the books darker themes. WTWTA could easily swap monsters on an island for colleagues at a team building retreat and work just as well in the 'real' world.||4||Gordon|
|Her||2013||Despite its 'artiness' making it less accessible, once you start to believe in the relationship between Theodore and Samantha the film shines, as does Joaquin Phoenix. A beautiful dystopian/utopian dream.||5||Gordon|
|Her||2013||Unique, funny, sad, disturbing and almost certainly prescient, but the film is marred by being overlong and becomes a little tedious.||3.5||Mat|
|Chi-Raq||2016||Powerful stuff. Some amazing monologues tear the American gun lobby and street gang culture to shreds.||4||Gordon|
|BlackKKlansman||2018||As funny as it is powerful, as thrilling as it is harrowing, Spike Lee's film delivers an incredibly strong message in the most entertaining way possible, with an ending that is both shocking and necessary. A film the whole world should see.||5||Mat|
|BlackKklansman||2018||Despite its wewighty subject matter Spike Lee has crafted an engaging film that works as both history and entertainment.||4||Gordon|
The Verdict – 4.2 Stars
Working with superb scripts (either his own or from the excellent Charlie Kaufman) is a good start, but it is what Jonze does with these works that impresses. The strange worlds he realises are so close to home, but twisted in strange directions. I am always excited to hear that Spike Jonze has a new project but unfortunately, since the wonderful HER all has been quiet on the directorial front as he continues writing and producing for his Jackass franchise.
This page will be updated as we watch more Spike Jonze films and therefore his overall rating will change over time. You can see where Spike sits on in the Directors League here.