“Like.” That simple button has been one of the most defining additions to my generation. That button determines who is cool and who is not amongst our ever-changing, intertwined, make it or break it, amazingly complex social structures. And who do we have to thank for this? Mark Zuckerberg, the founder, and Eduardo Saverin, co-founder of Facebook … oh, and the slew of people who later sued Zuckerberg claiming rights to Facebook. “The Social Network” takes us on the journey from conception to implementation of Facebook, and I LIKE it.
From beginning to end, “The Social Network” is full of great one-liners and genius. Written by Aaron Sorkin — who adapted the screenplay from the book “The Accidental Billionaires” by Ben Mezrich — wit and substance drive the script on screen. The language is very comparable to “Juno,” not in the exact style but in the sense that is authentic to today’s society and the college sub culture.
Jesse Eisenberg (“Cursed,” “Zombieland”) plays Mark Zuckerberg, a Harvard student who founded Facebook in 2004 but was accused by colleagues of stealing the idea. Eisenberg plays the role fantastically. His delivery is the epitome of what I imagine the real Zuckerberg to be. He is nerdy, smart, witty, blunt and believable. Andrew Garfield (“The Imaginarium Of Doctor Parnassus,” “Lions For Lambs”) plays co-founder Eduardo Saverin, who also sued Zuckerberg. Eduardo is a pivotal character and Garfield excels in his interpretation. Then there is one Mr. Justin Timberlake, who plays Sean Parker, the co-founder of Napster who later became president of Facebook. Timberlake was no exception to the fine acting displayed in this film. Parker was a troubled young entrepreneur and Justin captured the internal character struggles and made Parker’s presence known. Considering the fact that he does not have an abundance of screen time, Justin made his scenes count.
The catalyst that inspired Zuckerberg to create Facebook was a girl (go figure) … the same fateful force that pushed Sean Parker into creating Napster. Erica Albright, the muse for Facebook, is played by Rooney Mara (“A Nightmare On Elm Street,” “Youth In Revolt”). That rounds out the eclectic cast and it was awesome to see the relationships portrayed by these actors.
This is the type of story I adore seeing on the big screen, a movie that is good because of its acting, not necessarily its visual pretentiousness or its crude humor or violence. Not that I don’t enjoy all of the above, but it’s nice to get back to the roots of acting once in a while and see talent flourish.
There are a few, I won’t call them flaws — we’ll say “issues” — that I had with the film. Some of it was not exactly accurate. Screenwriter Aaron Sorkin stated, “I don’t want my fidelity to be to the truth; I want it to be to storytelling,” adding, “What is the big deal about accuracy purely for accuracy’s sake, and can we not have the true be the enemy of the good?” That’s what this film excels at, storytelling. Do I agree with indulging a script to tell a story? Depends on the script. In this case, it worked. The only other concern I have, is that Mark Zuckerberg was a little less than thrilled when he was first told about the project. His response was, “I just wished that nobody made a movie of me while I was still alive.” I felt bad for him when I first heard that he was not aware what was going on. Then I reminded myself that he was named the youngest billionaire on the planet and I didn’t feel bad a second longer.
“The Social Network” was directed by David Fincher. His works include “The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button,” “Fight Club,” “Se7en” and the slated “The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo.” I love his work, always have. His direction in “Fight Club” was unique and edgy. “Benjamin Button” was shot in a way that allowed the audience to see the plot from a different perspective. “Se7en” is one of my all-time favorite movies and I thought the feel that Fincher brought to the screen was eerie. “The Social Network” is another fine piece of directing by Fincher.
“The Social Network is about as well rounded as it gets in Hollywood. One of the great things about this film is that it’s great for teens to go see together, it’s great for young adults to go see, it’s great for parents to go see, but aside from all that, it’s a platform to take a family to see. This day and age, the way to get through to young people is either via text message, Twitter or Facebook and with this film, mothers and fathers can escape into that world with their teens. This aspect makes the film very unique in its genre. It’s not what one would call a “family” film, but it’s a film that I foresee families going to see.
Go see “The Social Network.” Highly anticipated, I am happy to report that it was well worth the wait. Facebook changed the, well, “face” of social networking. It bridged the age gap on the Internet. Not only do people connect with their friends, and display their relationship status, but family connection is a huge factor. There are grandparents on Facebook, which speaks highly of its user interface. Because so many of us use the site on a regular basis, it was quite fulfilling to see the roots and foundation of what started out known as TheFacebook.com. Very informative and completely entertaining, “The Social Network” is rated PG-13 for sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and some language.
(On a related note, you can “like” It’s Just Movies’ brand new Facebook page at www.facebook.com/itsjustmovies.)
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Follow Jessika Owens on Twitter at http://twitter.com/jessika.
movie, “The Social Network”, Aaron Sorkin, Jesse Eisenberg, Andrew Garfield, Justin Timberlake, Rooney Mara, David Fincher