So…I got all pumped up to see the multiple Oscar nominated film The Social Network. Unfortunately, I found it to be a very disappointing cinematic experience.
The creation of ‘Facebook’ is one of the great media, communications technology sagas of our time. Mark Zuckerberg is a revolutionary. How is it that this film singularly fails to depict him in fully human terms? The Social Network manages to evoke irritation very similar to that of relying on ‘Facebook’ for any authentic, meaningful connection with human beings – it is essentially superficial.
After watching The Social Network, I began thinking about Citizen Kane, Orson Welles’ film based on the life of another media revolutionary, Randolph Hearst, the brilliant, if unsavory, American newspaper and broadcasting kingpin. Charlie Kane emerges from Welles’ film as a fully developed, complex, contradictory character. The Mark Zuckerberg portrayed in David Fincher’s film is, to my mind, a barely believable enigma.
Welles made a film for the ages worthy of its subject. The creators of The Social Network have produced, at best, a mildly interesting, trendy film trapped in its own time.
P.S. Black Swan is spectacular and as compelling as The Social Network is tepid.