I never choose the easy way. And an easy way would be to pair Spike Jonze's Her with Sofia Coppola's Lost Translation - people kept banging on about the similarities between the two for months now, hell I even saw comparison gifsets of tumblr. But kids, yours truly always tries to make her life harder. So here we go, from the scratch.
When I was watching Her I didn't really think of technology or healing after a breakup. Granted the film is in a big part abut those two things but the thing I kept thinking about was how Theodore was looking for connection. Like he had all those feelings to express and things to say and he was looking for someone - or something to help him out.
I saw hat before.
In Lars and the Real Girl, beautiful, little movie, Ryan Gosling plays Lars - painfully shy, quiet man who buys a sex doll, gives her a name - Bianca - and treats her like she was his actual, human girlfriend. Much like in Her, an inanimate object gives the protagonist the comfort he needs.
Lars and Theodore both have a traditional couple in their lives - for Lars it's his brother and his wife and for Theodore his neighbors. They both have goofy co-workers, as well as someone who understands them - for Lars it's a doctor played by Patricia Clarkson and for Theodore his neighbor Amy. They also has someone who doesn't get their feelings at all - Lars' sister in law and Theodore's ex-wife.
Both films slowly and gradually show how protagonists can finally embrace life in a better way because of their relationship with the surrogates. Lars overcomes his crippling shyness and Theodore finally lets go of all the negative feelings the change in his life brought with it.
The women in their lives who help them out tend to have angelic qualities - Amy has messy curly hair unlike Theodore's ex and Margo, Lars' colleague from work, is a cute blond as opposed to his sister in law, always looking very strict, in spite of her desire to help Lars as much as she doesn't understand his actions.
Both films, while dealing with similar subject, frame the characters in
similar way - we often see Lars and Theodore all alone, they even leave that impression if they are surrounded by people or they are at work. We often see them with
their feelings surrogates in bed or outside, surrounded by nature - as if the precious bond they have was their own little, private haven.