I bet that I can guess what you’re thinking. A film about a computer nerd’s lawsuit? Boring right? If I were to be honest, that’s exactly what I thought when I heard about The Social Network, feeling that it would be better off as a television documentary rather than a feature film. I mean, come on, who wants to hear about the issues the creator of Facebook sat through, right? How much more boring can a film get?
Oh but how wrong I was. Under the clever direction of David Fincher, this film, which could have been disastrously mundane, is full to the brim with satirical humor, compelling issues and characters which will pull on the empathetic nerves of any viewer. As the concept of ‘nerdism’ grows ever popular in today’s society, the timing of this movie couldn’t better, and Jesse Eisenberg’s portrayal of Mark Zuckerberg captures this perfectly.
Jesse plays Mark as a socially inept genius, who will openly admit that he is better than others. But instead of repelling the viewers, he manages to catch their interest and eventually their hearts as the audience becomes painfully aware of Mark’s loneliness, and to a certain degree, naivety, as he gets sucked into the world of business. This film captures the social awkwardness that the real Zuckerberg felt perfectly, allowing the audience to feel his confusion, pain and the overwhelming feeling of sudden greatness that he was thrown into.
Jesse’s faultless delivery of sarcasm and general patronizing tone allows the audience to believe that he is difficult to get on with, yet somehow this makes Mark more likeable; Eisenberg got the balance between ‘jerk’ and ‘nerd’ spot on, allowing for a character that is socially confused enough to appeal to high school ‘misfits’ everywhere.
The audience feels an automatic attraction to Zuckerberg’s best and only friend Eduardo Saverin, expertly played by Andrew Garfield, who falls victim to the betrayal that Zuckerberg obliviously casts. Garfield, although considered as an ‘enemy’ of Zuckerberg during the lawsuit, still attracts as much sympathy from the audience certainly a difficult task to achieve for the most skilled actors.
It is now a challenge to use Facebook without thinking of its creators compelling story, and I for one cannot get the most gripping scenes from my mind when I login to the decade’s greatest phenomena.
So here is the world’s dullest story, in the hands of a more than capable cast and director; an instant hit in my book, which tugs at every part of your conscience. Whether you are in awe of the intelligence of Zuckerberg, feeling anger towards his enemies, laughing at his witty sarcasm or verging on tears at his inevitable loneliness, you cannot fail to see the genius behind this film, nor be astounded by the reminder that it is in fact, a true interpretation of the youngest billionaire the world has seen.
I recommend you see it. Twice.