‘The Social Network’ Makes Me Want to be a Billionaire So Frickin’ Bad

Let’s start off with the obvious question.  Who out there reading this doesn’t have a Facebook account, a show of hands please?  I futilely resisted all these years, but when pressured by the marketing forces behind the studios to get one for promotion of our reviews, I reluctantly succumbed having no choice in the matter really, and you know what?  I actually liked it and it can quickly become real addicting if you let it.  Heck, even grandparents around the country are on the site daily growing their farms or playing Mafia Wars. So if you are not already on Facebook, then I must ask you what are you waiting for?  When the woman who sits behind me at work signed up for an account, after saying for the past three years that she never would, I knew then and there that the popular social networking site has officially taken over the world (yes I’m talking about you Mickey).  Someone is making a lot of money, huh?

So let me ask you this.  When you sat there and saw the first theatrical trailer of The Social Network, did it not look like a rags-to-riches tale ripe for the picking?  I mean, come on, who does not like a triumphant underdog story every now and then, especially in these rough economic times.  Couple the film’s premise with the visions of Fight Club‘s legendary director, David Fincher, and you have all the ingredients, in my opinion, of not only box office success, but also possibly one hell of a good flick.  Going into last night’s press screening, the odds were definitely in my favor as far as I was concerned.

Alright, let’s get down to the basics.  With absolutely zero embellishment, The Social Network is a dramatization about the founding of the “social networking” website Facebook.  The screenplay was written by Aaron Sorkin and was adapted from Ben Mezrich’s 2009 nonfiction novel The Accidental Billionaires.  Now let’s tackle the good stuff, the meat and potatoes of Hollywood.  The David Fincher directed film stars Jesse Eisenberg (does he ever have some weird facial mannerisms and I love his intellectual ramblings), Andrew Garfield (the new Spidey), Justin Timberlake (“bring sexy back,” no, not really) and Rooney Mara (soon to be the girl with the dragon tattoo).  Interestingly enough, NIN front man Trent Reznor provides much of the musical score.  What an interesting combination we have thus far.  But wait, it gets even better.  A man that I seem to respect more and more over the years, Mr. Kevin Spacey, produces the film.  So needless to say, going into last night’s press screening I was pumped and convinced that The Social Network was going to kick some serious a$$.  Is anyone out there willing to bet me otherwise before proceeding in this review (cricket)?  I didn’t think so.  And…here…we…go…!

Well, we all make mistakes, right?  I have to correct something I said above.  Scratch off the underdog story thing I was going on about.  That’s just not applicable here.  Instead, The Social Network is about a boy genius, Mark Zuckerberg (Eisenberg), who just so happens to create one of the biggest websites ever, accidentally after breaking up with a girl (Mara), of course, and has a little help from his friend’s (Garfield) pocketbook.  However, that’s not to say there’s not some high stakes legal entanglements and personal squabbles that evolve from all this.  Nothing is ever this easy as we quickly find out within the first half hour of the film.  You see, Mark originally agreed to program and code a website for three students who had an idea at Harvard University.  The problem is, the Harvard students never put anything in writing and just formulated an oral agreement with Mark.  That was mistake number one on their behalf.  Well Mark, although he liked their idea at first, had bigger and better plans, but ironically Mark was never motivated by money.  He just wanted his creation to be cool.  Enter Sean Parker, the founder of Napster, knows everything about cool, right?  Well, at least Mark thinks so.  That kind of puts a tightly knotted ball of tension into the pot now between Mark and his best friend (oops I mean former best friend) Eduardo (Garfield).  Essentially, this is the story (dramatization) of the youngest billionaire ever, Mark Zuckerberg, and all the highs and lows he experienced in forming the largest social networking site ever, Facebook.  Even if you have zero interest in the website, it’s still a great story to behold on the big screen or in the privacy of your own living room, wherever you choose to experience it for the first time.

The film as a whole was really quite slick.  It played out like a well-oiled machine.  Despite all the legal mumble jumbo going on, I think David Fincher did very well with keeping the film’s pace moving steadily along.  I never once caught myself wondering what time it was as I was harmoniously engaged throughout the entire feature.  The only problem I foresee is that this may be one of those flicks I only catch once.  Although I enjoyed and applauded the presentation, I think this is one of the films that I probably wouldn’t get much replay value out of if I were to own it on Blu-ray.  That’s not to take anything away from this film, that’s just my immediate thoughts brewing within my skullcap.  Maybe after a repeat viewing I might change my mind, like I usually do, but for now, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.  So you have your choices this weekend, The Social Network or Let Me In.  Why not see them both?  I did!


Owner/Writer/Reviewer/Editor, Dreamer, Producer, Agent of Love, Film Lover, Writer of Screenplays and a Devoted Apostle to all things Ford Mustangs (the real ones with V8's!). Some of my favorite films include FIGHT CLUB, MOULIN ROUGE, THE DARK KNIGHT, STAR WARS alongside television shows such as SEINFELD, 24, SANFORD & SON and even the often loathed in the geek community BIG BANG THEORY. Outside of my three lives I live I also enjoy spending time with my girlfriend and our three girls (of the furry kind).

6 Responses to “‘The Social Network’ Makes Me Want to be a Billionaire So Frickin’ Bad”

  1. Scott T. Morrison

    Sounds like I will watch the movie on NetFlix when it comes out.

  2. Gerard Iribe

    I’ve got my ticket for the first matinee showing today.

  3. Sean Ferguson

    This looks like it will be pretty good.

  4. Brian White

    What did you think Gerard?

  5. Gerard Iribe

    Yeah, just came back and I thought it was pretty good. It may rank down as my least favorite David Fincher film (I do enjoy Alien 3), but thought it was good. I loved the Trent Reznor music score, though.

    I hope there’s a director’s cut when it comes on out on blu-ray. This film was about 2 hours. I could have gone for another 30-40 minutes.

    I did read the book it was based off of many months ago, and there’s so much that was left out. I might re-read it again just to fill in the gaps.

  6. blu jay

    dont have facebook–probably won’t–dont need it! but think the movie might be good…thnx, Brian