Steve Jobs: The Lost Interview isn’t a film, nor is it a documentary. It’s a straight interview that was filmed after Jobs’ exile from Apple and during his time spearheading NeXt, the company he founded after being ousted. Bay Area residents can see it this week during limited screenings.

To say Steve Jobs was a visionary would be to state the obvious. But it’s such a loaded statement, it’s hard not to repeat it. Steve Jobs changed the world. But, perhaps ironically, for a man who forever altered the way we interact socially and document every minutiae of our daily lives, very few video interviews exist of him. And so it was that just days after his passing a VHS copy of a 1995 interview believed to be lost forever was found in a garage.

Parts of the interview were used for the TV series Triumph of the Nerds but most was left on the cutting room floor. Now it’s being shown in its entirety for the first time. The interview was shot roughly a year before Jobs returned to Apple and turned it into the company it is today. At the time he had been squeezed out of the company he had started and the Jobs-less Apple was failing.

NeXt wasn’t going to do what Apple could do, or what Microsoft was doing and Jobs admits as much in the interview. The interview doesn’t just dwell on where Jobs sees the future of the computer industry going (although his predictions are spot on), it actually covers his life from Apple’s beginnings through the present. It’s a very open interview, at least on most topics, where he talks about how Apple began, how the company came together and how he built the first Apple computer.

Despite Jobs becoming a technological, and cultural, icon in the years preceding his death, he was quite reserved. Except for those times he took to the stage to introduce Apple’s newest inventions, he rarely took the spotlight. And while this interview is barely over an hour, it’s glaringly obvious that he would be the greatest visionary and inventor since Thomas Edison, if he already wasn’t.

It’s a truly fascinating insight into a man that did more than just revolutionize the computer industry. He revolutionized the way we interact, the way we consume media and, ultimately, the way we live our lives. This interview illuminates the man behind all of that and gives a small snapshot of how he learned from his mistakes and how he predicted computers and Internet would change human existence.

This film is a Landmark Theatres exclusive, screening November 16 to November 24 at Opera Plaza Cinemas in SF, Aquarius Theatre in Palo Alto and Shattuck Cinemas in Berkeley. Robert Cringely, writer and presenter of the original interview, will be in attendance at Aquarius Theatres on November 16 and Opera Plaza Cinemas on November 17.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

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