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The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

COLUMN: ‘The Social Network:’ nice guys finish last

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Drew Coffey

I’ll start by saying that I am completely aware that this film is not fully accurate. However, this film stands as one of the most entertainingly crafted and sharply made real-life biopics in the last 20 years.  

Directed by David Fincher and released in 2010, the Oscar-winning “The Social Network” tells the slightly fictionalized story of how Facebook was created back in 2003, revealing the legal obstacles that came as a result.  

The film stars Jesse Eisenberg, Andrew Garfield and Justin Timberlake and is based on the book “The Accidental Billionaires,” which details the personal relationship between Mark Zuckerberg and his former friend and co-founder of Facebook Eduardo Saverin.  

With the film being based on a one-sided telling of the events, I knew to take the film’s presentation of the story with a grain of salt.  

Despite this, David Fincher does a masterful job telling this very gripping and culturally significant story.  

To start, the first thing I can say about this film is the dialogue.  

Written by Aaron Sorkin, the film has a mesmerizing and attention-grabbing flow to it. Even when the characters are discussing subjects as confusing as coding or software design, the screenplay makes sure to simplify it for general audiences.  

Sometimes, the dialogue feels like a constant ping-pong match of wordplay that heightens the progression of the creation of Facebook.  

The film is also surprisingly funny, witty and sharp when it comes to the characters.  

Mark Zuckerberg, played by Eisenberg, is a socially awkward, smug and at times even villainous character who rides the line between completely frustrating and despicable.  

The chemistry between Zuckerberg and Saverin, played by Garfield, is the highlight of the film for me. The back-and-forth tension and overall outcome of their friendship create a poignant tale of betrayal.  

Of course, the story is elevated with its true story details to make the film more entertaining, and entertaining it truly is. I think this factor is credited to the extremely dynamic editing.  

There is no dead space in this film that lessens the pacing or makes you disinterested in the characters.  

I also think the addition of a new character like Sean Parker, played by the famous pop singer Justin Timberlake, plays a crucial role in how the creation of the immensely popular site became so muddled in the court system.  

Now, referencing back to the first line of this review. Is the movie realistic and truthful?  

Well, yes and no.  

Like any biopic, the film takes many creative liberties to give a more cohesive plot. But there are minor inaccuracies such as Zuckerberg’s reason for creating Facebook.  

Overall, these factors don’t really change my view of the film as it still gives a highly engaging and nuanced look into how a monumentally popular and innovative creation caused personal turmoil for those involved.  

I would go as far as saying that this film is one of those films you need to watch at least once in your life because of how culturally significant Facebook has become even 14 years later.  

My overall rating: 4.5/5

 

Drew Coffey can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected].

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Drew Coffey
Drew Coffey, Reporter, Columnist
Drew is a senior television and video production major. He previously served as a reporter for The News.

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