Sunday, 31 October 2010

Why Keep Your Life on Hold, For Hope?

You can get to 8 blog followers without making any enemies though. Who's laughing now ZSuckerberg?

The title of this post is taken from a ridiculous site I just stumbled across called Facebook Quotes. As expected, this site solely consists of quotes people can use for their Facebook statuses. They're arranged in lists under titles like 'Hope' and 'Missing you'. If I told you that they're all hideously spelt and just a little bit melodramatic would you be surprised? Thought not.

I've just got back from holiday so I haven't been posting on here nor have I been tweeting. If you've noticed then, well, I'm flattered actually. Meanwhile, I've been a bit slow with cinema releases this year which is to say that whilst I've watched things, I've usually only got round to seeing them after they've been out for weeks. For evidence of this read my post I made earlier in the year hating on 'Inception' and then subsequent awkward opinion reversal posts when I'd actually *seen* it and realised that, oh wow, it's really quite good. Hey, don't look at me like that. I always judge things both too early and, by and large, by their cover.

With the above paragraph considered, I finally got around to watching 'The Social Network' last night and it was really good. I'll say here that when I originally heard the premise of the film I was a bit put off. I mean Facebook, at the absolute best of times, is pretty painful* and these guys are making a film about this time waster. I mean, seriously? It was when I was thinking thoughts like these that someone nudged me and told me about all the fascinating power struggles Facebook had encountered during its inception (oh! nice link) and more importantly that the film was going to be directed by all round nice guy and really-good-at-what-he does-man, David Fincher.

This success of this film for me is largely down to two factors. Firstly, the script is brilliantly lean and really conveys what it probably was like when some nerds decided to, by hook or by crook, set up this site that we now waste all of our lives on. These guys aren't portrayed as being amazingly charasmatic nor are they especially witty and that was something I thought might have been lost in translation. It'd be easy to write the creators up as prodigious upstarts that saw what they wanted in life, what they aspired to be and just went out there and got it. Life is, of course, rarely like that and whether some of the decisions we witness being made in this film were by accident or design, it's sort of hard to tell. The film reflects all this brilliantly.

Secondly, the acting (Zuckerberg's character in particular) is faultless. Jesse Eisenburg plays Zuckerberg as a 'coding genius'. That term right there 'coding genius' may as well be a synonym for 'geek', let's be honest here. The crucially important thing about Mark Zuckerberg in real life and as he is portrayed here is to remember that he was never in any doubt about his abilities. He knew and still knows how good he is. Eisenburg underpins his performance with a knowing self satisfaction that makes him look obnoxious pre Facebook taking off but completely vindicated as the users log on in their thousands, his HTML coding gets him groupies and he becomes BFFs with the extremely annoying Sean Parker played by Justin Timberlake. Here bringin' SexyBack with that stupid perm looking thing he use to rock in N*Sync's dying days.

So 'The Social Network' becomes the second big film of the year to completely exceed my expectations. The first one being 'Inception', of course. I was going to end this post with a joke that links those two films but to be honest, I don't think you could find two films more diametrically opposed unless you were watching 'Mean Girls' on one screen and 'Jurassic Park' on another, so I gave up.

*I understand that the quality of your own Facebook experience depends totally on who you have on your friends list. It just so happens that my friends list is made up of people I'm not friends with, people I don't know and people that can't spell. Thems the breaks.

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