Tuesday, January 18, 2011
The Social Network
By now, you realize the new movie, The Social Network, has become a phenomena of sorts. Some observers are going so far as to say that it defines an entire generation, much like The Big Chill did in the 1980s for baby boomers. It certainly is a leading candidate to take home a ton of awards at the upcoming Oscars. But is it as good as advertised? Should you go out and rent or buy a copy? At least, in my opinion, it has to be one of the best films of the year. It’s intelligent, smart and thought-provoking.
Who doesn’t know a little something about the Mark Zuckerburg story? As founder of Facebook, he is the world’s youngest billionaire. In The Social Network he is portrayed by Jesse Eisenberg, a brilliant computer wiz who is working on his undergraduate studies at Harvard University. We never fully understand why he starts Facebook other than an opportunity to meet girls. For that matter, we never fully understand his motives or why he is driven to do the things he does. That’s what makes this film so brilliant. The viewer will have to determine that based on all the available evidence.
This kind of stuff can be really complicated. But the script somehow makes the details less important than the emotions that surround them. Is there a message to be found in The Social Network, perhaps a lesson to be learned? Often filmmakers themselves don’t realize what kind of movie they are making.
The real question is how does anybody justify and find a way to live their lives once they have committed such acts. We know there is a price to be paid for it. Late at night it has to eat at the very soul of Mark Zuckerburg. Gee, wasn’t there enough money to go around for everybody?