I just went to see The Social Network at the Cineworld Haymarket. Wow.
For months, I had thought this film sounded like a stupid idea. Zeightgeisty pap, that’d create a lot of noise and then die out. However, as soon as Fincher and Sorkin came on board, it turned my head. I love both of these guys work, and admire them both (even if I didn’t think Charlie Wilson’s War and vast swathes of Studio 60 On The Sunset were up to much.) When I heard Jesse Eisenberg was to play Mark Zuckerberg, I was impressed. He did some astonishing work in Adventureland, which was one of my movies of last year and I find him an utterly compelling screen presence.
The second trailer is what truly got me pumped: The score, the emotion, the cheesy but fun tagline – it seemed to be pointing to a very considered film. And it was. A focused, intelligent film that aptly depicts both the cold genius and yearning humanity of the Zuckerberg character. Andrew Garfield goes a long way to supporting a lot of the later. He’s such a nice guy, trying to make his way, that even when Mark is being an arsehole, you think that there must be something to him if this guy is sticking with him, and they have a couple of little moments in which their friendship that are the tenderest in the film. Each of those moments makes the framing story of the lawsuits, which was initially a little distracting, resonate more as the film goes on, as it lets us know that it will all eventually break down horribly in the classic style of a tragedy. Which is what this film really is (not a comedy-drama, thanks wikipedia).
I don’t want to write about it, I just want to see it again. Great dialogue and skilfully structured – spend your money, it’s a writer’s lesson.