The “true story” of the meteoric rise & catastrophic demise of the world’s first smartphone, BLACKBERRY is a smart, funny tech story with a heart – 98 percent fresh on Rotten Tomatoes – that sees two loveably goofy tech upstarts pitted against big money investors in a terrifically entertaining whirlwind ride, with a knockout indie rock soundtrack.
Fast, funny and brilliantly smart, BLACKBERRY is written and directed by Matt Johnson (The Dirties), who also delivers a hilariously deadpan lead performance alongside Jay Baruchel (How To Train Your Dragon). Baruchel is quite brilliant as the beleaguered techie thrown into the lion’s den of Silicon Valley big business. Howerton, famous for playing Dennis in the hit sitcom It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, is almost unrecognisable here, outstanding in a role that is being tipped for awards season success, as the dogged and intense CEO who risks everything to bring the ‘smartphone’ to the market. The supporting cast includes Rich Sommer (Mad Men), Michael Ironside (Scanners), Saul Rubinek (True Romance), Cary Elwes (Saw) and Martin Donovan (Tenet).
Every era has its visionaries, and BLACKBERRY, co-written by Director Matt Johnson and Producer Matthew Miller, investigates the brilliance of the individuals that invented the world’s first smartphone. Recounting the Canadian company’s humble yet chaotic rise to market dominance, BLACKBERRY is a darkly comedic telling of the tragic tale of a Canadian company that revolutionised the way we communicate, before swiftly plummeting into obsolescence.
It’s 1996, and Mike Lazaridis (Jay Baruchel) and his business partner and best friend Douglas Fregin (Matt Johnson) are on the edge of creating the world’s first smartphone. Unfortunately for them, they are less business savvy than they are tech, and struggle to keep their company, Research in Motion, afloat. Everything changes when cunning businessman Jim Balsillie (Glenn Howerton) agrees to join the company, bringing with him the money and experience needed to create and sell a prototype of their invention.
Seemingly overnight the three men revolutionise the way people work, communicate and connect. Celebrities, politicians and businessmen are now addicted to their BlackBerrys. The company’s value skyrockets, yet within a few short years shady business dealings, personal grievances, and, perhaps most dangerously, the iPhone, threaten the company’s incredible success.
BLACKBERRY is released exclusively in UK & Irish cinemas from 6th October 2023