In the movie Her (2013) we find Samantha arranges for a surrogate (Isabella) for Theodore and herself for interactions. We see Isabella arrives and Theodore gives her a microphone and a "mole" like device which she gently attaches to her face.

We get this notion that this device helps in the visual aspect of Samantha and the conversation begins. What my question is: Did this device access/control Isabella's facial expressions too? or they were originally hers(Isabella's)?

I did look around for any mention of this but could not find anyone referring to this device and how it worked.

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  • Was my question too broad, unclear, non specific, or hugely opinion based? It would be helpful for me when posting further questions. Commented Mar 5, 2017 at 11:05

2 Answers 2


No, the device does not control facial expressions

From what I assume from the movie, Isabelle is just some professional who is hired by Samantha

From the script (emphasis mine):

SAMANTHA I know you’re going through a lot, but there’s something I want to talk to you about, okay?

Well, things have felt off with us since you went to see Catherine. (hesitant) We haven’t been having sex. I understand that I don’t have a body and that--

THEODORE No, no, that’s just normal. When you first start going out it’s like the honeymoon phase and you have sex all the time. It’s normal.

SAMANTHA (still insecure, not convinced) Oh, okay. (beat) Well, I found something that I thought could be fun. It’s a service that provides a surrogate sexual partner for an OS/Human relationship.

THEODORE Yeah. What is it?

I was corrected in the comments that no money was involved, but when I saw the scene, I was under impression that Isabelle and Samantha rehearsed whats going to happen

So, basically Isabelle is someone who is invested in the relationship. She knows whats going to happen. One may even assume that she feels being Samantha and once I even assumed that Isabelle fallen in love with Theodore.

Tl;DR: Isabelle is in full control of her face

  • Firstly, Pavel, I am afraid your first statement in bold is wrong. Samantha confirms specifically when Theodore asks, that there is no money involved. So she WASNT just what you have mentioned. Samantha says, she just wanted to be a part of their relationship.Secondly, my question was not WHO ISABELLA WAS.....It was regarding that device and I failed to find any reference of that ans here in your quotes. But thanks for the try anyway. Commented Mar 5, 2017 at 10:24
  • I will edit answer lightly, but main premise holds: Isabella is someone who is invested into Samantha / Theodhore relationship. Even though no money is involved, Isabelle is someone from service dealing specifically with relationships like these. So, I still do not think the mole controls her face. She is professional invested in their relationship Commented Mar 5, 2017 at 10:29
  • The function of the mole and what it can do is based on the technology of AI used in that plot. I wanted to be sure of just that Pavel. The device, as you must know was given by Samantha to Theodore to be handed over to Isabella. Here, the technology of the device has nothing to do with Isabella's profession. I wanted to check if there were any references on the usage of this device, mentioned anywhere. Commented Mar 5, 2017 at 10:34
  • Thats not question you originally asked. You even put emphasis on question if Isabelle is in control of her face. That is the answer I am providing you Commented Mar 5, 2017 at 10:37
  • Right!!!. Whether Isabella is controlling her facial expressions when Samantha is talking to Theodore. Thats exactly what I asked. But that depends on that device, right? How does it depend on who Isabella actually is? You gave this answer as an "assumption" my friend. I am looking for sources where that assumption could be verified. Commented Mar 5, 2017 at 10:40

In the (final version of the) movie, when Theodore handed the mole like device to Isabelle, he said:

"Oh, Samantha told me to give you these. It's a camera and an earpiece."

A camera does not exert control over human muscles. It would just allow Samantha to experience the interaction from Isabelle's point of view.

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