Monday, 18 October 2010

[394] The Social Network (2010) Review

Over the last week I wrote nearly 2500 words on The Social Network. I think that's my limit. I've got other things to write, anyway. Here is my review, which is more of an essay, as Ron Hogan had already written a straightforward review for Den of Geek, and I tried to make mine a little deeper.

Call it a symptom of our Internet existence. I've been sitting on this review of The Social Network for over two weeks, embargoed until days before its UK release. In the time between the screening and now, the film has been released Stateside, with the flurry of attention and discussion that is to be expected of such a development.

Our resident American-based reviewer, Ron Hogan, has had his say (he liked it). Friends have Twittered their reactions to advance, public screenings, unencumbered by embargo. It seems that every possible angle, every opinion, has been expressed.

That's life, today. Sentiments are disseminated along instantaneous, digital highways, becoming solidified about halfway between content management system and browser window. It has been a steady progression over the last two decades, gradually effecting our lives from dot com boom to bust and beyond, culminating in the rise of social media, bolstered by the likes of YouTube, MySpace and, of course, Facebook.

The Social Network is a film about Facebook, written by Aaron Sorkin and directed by David Fincher. That's the writer who created the big liberal bear hug,
The West Wing, collaborating with the most restrained director from Hollywood's pilfered roster of music video visionaries.

With the likes of
Zodiac (a sumptuous crime film with a long, mid-act ellipsis, and an inconclusive conclusion) and The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button (a flawed, inverted Forrest Gump substituting Baby Boomer nostalgia for textured Americana), Fincher has placed his full attentions on script, place and character, using his keen sense of production polish to lift his work out of its immediate cinematic context. He is one of the few directors working today who helms projects that gaze across broad horizons, from the classical past to the stylistic future. But The Social Network, while exhibiting the touch of a master filmmaker, is unmistakeably a film about the world we live in today.

Read the full article here.

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