The Social Network Link Love: 10/22/2010
After reading The Accidental Billionaires and watching The Social Network last night and then discussing – I’m feeling a bit burnt out on discussing it in-depth and rehashing comments I’ve previously made.
There’s also so much good writing out there exploring elements of the film and book which are problematic, that I want to just link-spam the hell out of this post and leave it there. I am not familiar enough with the subject matters (elite schools, final clubs, programming, start-ups, silicon valley, etc) to wax effusive or effective.
And the points which concerned me have all been nicely covered by those in the fields or with a greater stake in making said points.
My general take on the book is that it really shouldn’t be labeled non-fiction and the subject matter would have best been tackled by someone with more journalism and research skills. I missed Zuckerberg as a character – he was entirely absent from the book.
Therefore, his presence in the film is immense. Jesse Eisenberg was quite captivating at being something other than a more cutting version of Michael Cera. I was also pleasantly surprised by Andrew Garfield’s depiction of Eduardo, who was just as unlikable on page as the other characters (the Winkelvii, Zuckerberg), but came off as being very human and sympathetic in the film.
Zuckerberg did get tapped as being an asshole and that statement, to me is neither here nor there. Did he do something illegal? No. Did he do something moral repugnant? Probably. Is that a standard practice in business ventures and start-ups? Most likely. When there are billions of dollars to be made – someone is eventually going to be an asshole. Especially the CEO or CFO or whoever the hell is in a leadership role. It’s their job.
It did really feel like the film was trying to push the agenda that Zuckerberg wanted to impress the ladiez AND the final clubs. Which I don’t buy. I was more convinced, and am quite certain, that Zuckerberg is an artist and programming is his medium. I could relate to his singular vision and the drive to create. This article echoes my sentiments.
What separates this film from being a modern-day Citizen Kane is the lack of a narrative. Zuckerberg is not boot straps people. In fact, there’s little to no mention of where this brilliant soul emerged from. His rags to riches story is more of a North Face fleece to riches story, which isn’t all that spectacular. Loads of smart, nerdy kids poised in position for opportunity find success.
LINK LOVE AFTER THE CUT…
I think the book and film really try to make him seem more mysterious than he is. Which is bullshit. It’s why I would rather read something like The Facebook Effect than an entertaining but fictionalized accounting of reality.
So that’s my piece. When it comes to the sexism in the film – I have to agree it’s there. But it’s a movie made in Hollywood so that doesn’t surprise me too incredibly. The sexism is also not out-of-line with the book, and is actually cleaned up in many places so it was much more pleasing to endure.
SEXISM LINK LOVE:
– Jezebel never fails to provide an interesting series of viewpoints, their article “The Social Network, where women never have ideas,” kick started my critical analysis of the sexism.
RACISM LINK LOVE:
FACT vs FICTION LINK LOVE:
– Daily Beast article contributed by Miss DeMew to the book club discussion wall (the club is housed on Facebook)
– Mark Zuckerberg explains how his real motivation differs from the movie motivation. Also mocks his own bad wardrobe.
– Tech Crunch article aimed at Aaron Sorkin.
Tags: Aaron Sorkin, Andrew Garfield, David Kirkpatrick, Eduardo Saverin, Geek Feminism, Jesse Eisenberg, Jezebel, Mark Zuckerberg, racism, Sexism, The Accidental Billionaires, The Facebook Effect, The Social Network