Search This Blog

Saturday, 30 October 2010

Film - The Social Network - directed by David Fincher

Star rating – 8/10

This is the cautionary tale of how the world’s youngest billionaire created his Facebook empire, but lost his only friend in the process; of how money can’t necessarily buy you love, and the value of loyalty. Nerdy Mark Zuckerberg, played wonderfully well with an acerbic smart wit and just the right degree of Asbergic edge, by Jesse Eisenberg, is a Harvard undergraduate when in 2003 he comes up with his world changing invention.

The film sets his creation against the backdrop of Zuckerberg being dumped by his smart, pretty girlfriend Erica for being ‘an ass hole’. Rejection is not something he takes in his stride, and after posting some nasty things about her on his blog, he decides to create a pretty misogynistic website called Facemash, which allows his fellow students to rate the pictures of the college girls on the site against each other. After causing the college IT systems to crash due to the stir this site creates, Zuckerberg gets the inspiration to adapt the site into what we now know as Facebook.

He is helped in the fledgling venture by his best (and only) friend Eduardo Saverin, who is convincingly and sympathetically played here by Andrew Garfield, who gives him some start up capital, and becomes the Chief Finance Director. The action takes place partly in flashback to the heady days of Facebook’s inception and stratospheric rise, and partly in the shape of two court room battles as both Saverin, and the wealthy rowers and all round American guys, twins Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss, sue Zuckerberg for millions of dollars for respectively cruelly cutting Saverin out of the Facebook empire, and for stealing and adapting the original idea for a Harvard facebook from the Winklevoss duo.

The script, by the West Wing’s Aaron Sorkin, is fabulous, fast paced, and very funny in places, with clever put down’s by Zuckerberg throughout to anyone whom he considers to be less intelligent than himself, which is pretty much everyone else in the film. There is also a very entertaining turn by the university President when the twins approach him to discipline Zuckerberg for theft – not really the done thing to make such a fuss at Harvard.

It is extremely ironic how the person who invented the biggest social networking site in the world seems to have no social skills, and no friends of his own at all, probably not even any Facebook friends. He thinks his new found wealth and reputation will win Erica back, but she has more scruples, and principles than that – go Erica! This is a funny, thought provoking and highly entertaining film. The central performances are pitch perfect, including a great contribution from Justin Timberlake as the successful and ruthless Napster founder and flashy entrepreneur Sean Parker. You are left with the feeling that Zuckerberg is more than welcome to his billions – as he sits, friendless and lonely reflecting on his empire built on betrayals.

No comments:

Post a Comment