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Film Review: The Social Network

Posted By Helen Holmes On October 28, 2010 @ 4:00 am In Arts and Entertainment | Comments Disabled

While I am writing this review, I am on Facebook. My friend and I are discussing Halloween costumes.
I have just gotten home from the movie theater, and I have learned where the updates, relationship statuses, and over-sharing all began.
Surprisingly enough, although the story of Facebook is predominantly centered on a male cast, including Mark Zuckerberg and his friend Eduardo, its catalyst is a woman.
In the first scene of The Social Network, Harvard student Zuckerberg is having a drink with his girlfriend, Erica.
Their banter turns sour when he mentions the exclusive Final clubs, which are run by the most popular guys at Harvard.
After implying that Erica has slept with the bartender to get them a table, she breaks up with him and says that she has to go study.
“No you don’t, Zuckerberg says.
When she asks why, he says, “Because you go to B.U.
This is only one of many great scenes in the movie, which was directed by David Fincher and based off of a book called “The Accidental Billionaires.
The movie depicts the revenge fantasy of an introverted, brilliant nerd who, humiliated by his encounter with his girlfriend, sees an opportunity to create something amazing and takes it.
Zuckerberg has been asked by two rich kids, Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss, to write a code for their website, The Harvard Connection.
The website is set to link friends together using personal information, photos, and exclusivity. To register, you must have a Harvard email address.
Zuckerberg almost immediately sees the potential in the idea, and drops the “Winklevii to create “The Facebook.
What could have been a slow, boring courtroom drama (the movie bounces between the present and the future, in which he is being sued) is a fascinating, funny, and emotional story peppered with snappy dialogue and top-notch acting.
Jesse Eisenberg is as fantastic as Zuckerberg. He creates an excellent balance within a character who is equally socially inept and desperate for a satisfying social experience.
This is the movie that makes Eisenberg a star, and I will definitely not be confusing him with Michael Cera anymore.
Equally excellent is, surprisingly, Justin Timberlake as Napster founder Sean Parker.
Parker is the intoxicating force behind the website, and is also almost its undoing.
Timberlake paints him as a smoothly suspicious entrepreneur who has both everything and nothing to lose.
The filmmaking in itself is excellent; in one memorable sequence the Winklevoss twins lose a very close rowing race, filled with slow motion shots and spectacular imagery, and then discover that the video of their failure has already been posted on Zuckerberg’s Facebook.
Of course, the central plot of the movie revolves around the website that was created.
Zuckerberg, in his own isolation, has created a very specific and self-absorbed method of socializing.
Facebook’s addictiveness, and brilliance, is in treating the social experience as something that can be tangibly measured and scored: in the amount of friends you have, notifications you’Ëœve received, and whether you’re in a relationship or not.
The movie ends on a note of sheer brilliance and poignancy, which of course I won’t spoil for you.
All I can say is, go and see it.
If it doesn’t change the way you use Facebook, at the very least it will give you a taste of truly great modern cinema, and will make you think twice about blogging something nasty at two in the morning.

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URL to article: http://www.denebolaonline.net/2010/10/28/film-review-the-social-network/

URLs in this post:

[1] Is your Facebook jeopardizing your future?: http://www.denebolaonline.net/2009/12/23/is-your-facebook-jeopardizing-your-future/

[2] Koolaidria sparks facebook name changing phenomenon: http://www.denebolaonline.net/2010/09/30/koolaidria-sparks-facebook-name-changing-phenomenon/

[3] Praise to Peter Jackson’s new film: District 9 revitalizes alien science fiction genre: http://www.denebolaonline.net/2009/09/30/district-9/

[4] Film Review: A Film Unfinished: http://www.denebolaonline.net/2010/10/28/jamie-rinaldi-%e2%80%94-history-and-social-sciences/

[5] The Tyranny of Technology: http://www.denebolaonline.net/2010/12/06/the-tyranny-of-technology/

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