Review and Commentary: ‘The Social Network’

I experienced college with Facebook. Toward the end of my senior year in high school, I heard about a website for social networking. Sure, we had MySpace in high school, but there was an air of mystery to it that was unappealing. Who was I really talking to? And, no one can forget those obnoxious and hideous profile pages. Who could find anything in that barrage of flashing images, clashing colors and obtrusive music that started with every new profile seen. I could not handle it.

And then there was the promise of “The Facebook.” At the time, you needed an e-mail account ending with .edu or you would not be able to join. The profiles clearly stated the member’s name at the top of the page. The design was clean and made finding information easy. And, most of all, no music randomly starting. This was the place for me.

As soon as I received my university e-mail address, I registered for an account. Since that day in the summer of 2005, my life has been cataloged via Facebook (and since 2008, Twitter).

This is my backstory as I began to watch “The Social Network.” Suffice it to say I was already invested to this film even before taking my seat in the theater because my college career was influenced so heavily by Facebook. But my attachment to the website didn’t mean I was going to
love the film.

Aaron Sorkin, who wrote the screenplay, explained on “The View” that your opinion of the movie will not be swayed about whether or not you like Facebook.

If you hate Facebook, if you love Facebook, if you’ve never heard of Facebook, that doesn’t matter. The movie isn’t about Facebook,” Sorkin said to the ladies.

And part of that statement is true. Sorkin’s screenplay focuses on the story around Facebook, not necessarily the website itself.

Sorkin and director David Fincher understand “The Social Network” is about the characters, not the website.

The movie is jam-packed with impeccable, smart dialogue thanks to Sorkin, the brain behind great TV series “The West Wing” and “Sports Night.” The audience experiences a high-energy, fast-paced story that keeps its attention.

Comparing “Network” to other excellent films from this year — such as “Inception” and “Toy Story 3” — is difficult because the genres are vastly different. There is, however, one similarity: they are all impressive films.

The editing, cinematography and soundtrack work very well together, keeping “The Social Network” exciting and intense. Viewers are immersed into the film and are suddenly invested in the story. It is hard to watch passively. Eyes are glued to the screen for the two-hour running time, making for an atypical movie-going experience.

/ 5



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