I was able to watch an advanced (free) screening of the new movie The Social Network. Now, I have been dying to see this movie since I heard of its existence. (Watch the trailer below)
Like Justin Timberlake says, "This is our time!" I, personally, feel like a movie like this that defines OUR generation of super fast, I'm-invincible, internet-life-sharing, thinking hipsters should have been made a few years ago. After some thought, I realized that a few years ago older people (and even people my age) didn't quite GRASP the power of the internet. Seeing small (and large) businesses run by 40-somethings laughingly attempt to use twitter and youtube is an indication that this movie is ready to be shown. And shown before it becomes irrelevant!
Is it Good?
So I probably don't need to tell you that this movie "keeps you on your toes" and "defines a generation". The film has a feeling like you're on the internet. Try it out! As your watching the movie, as each scene changes, imagine you're on google clicking links. Sometimes things are out of order and it goes by really fast! The story is good. There's no question that this is a good story. There's no question that it will encourage you to think about things (if you want to). And don't let the beginning of the movie kill your mood. The first 5 minutes is the most awkward, as it should be. It sets your attitude toward Mark, the main character. And I'd be lying if I didn't say I saw a bit of myself in Mark and his CONSTANT blogging, lol. It was so nostalgic to see the open page of LIVEJOURNAL. Yah, before it got owned & dominated by Russians. And you had to actually know something about HTML code. :P So next time my mom gets on to me for always blogging, I can use Mark Zuckerberg as an (invalid) counter-argument. Hah!
What is it About?
This movie is a zeitgeist movie. It captures the essence of this time. This fast-paced, "all about innovation" and the importance of understanding other people. And the reason I wanted to see this movie was because I heard it was Oscar-worthy. Its not a documentary-ish film. It is a dramatic film. Its not /about/ the creation of facebook. It is a drama. That means characters, story, relationships, development, etc.
BTW, any other disney fans out there? I'm sorry, but I was GIDDY over the fact that Brenda Song was in her first big-screen-not-for-kids-not-disney movie! It's seriously about time for her.
Who Should See It?
If you like thinking about business, our "era" or zeitgeist, internet-technology, college movies, success stories, drama, male relationships (friends and enemies), variety of characters -- then I recommend this movie. :) Now, some people are saying "Good movie, but no one over 30 is going to see it." I say this movie isn't necessarily for people over 30. They can't relate to this "off the top of their head". This movie is so obviously a generational one. And I'm glad its finally here.
Now... I've got some spoilers. Are you ready? Here are some things that I'm thinking about AFTER I walk out of the cinema...
You're VERY GOOD, but you're not the best
The rowing twins had this theme that I have been thinking about for a while. Take a moment to ponder:
- Their harvard site is not successful, but its a great idea. They can talk about how they started the idea for facebook. They could sue. But they can never be #1 like FB.
- They were SO CLOSE, but came in second in the race. You can talk on and on about HOW CLOSE it was. How that NEVER happens. How they should be very proud. But #1 gets the trophy, the respect, etc.
- They made the olympic team which came in just 6th (that bit of information was included ON PURPOSE, duh!). Michael Phelps is being talked about for a reason. Ryan Lochte (on the US team, but came in 3rd) is not being talked about for a reason.
I'm currently reading "How to Be A High School Superstar" by Cal Newport (I will do a review, of course). He brings up this topic. The idea that you need to be the best or your excellence and effort won't be worth as much. Everyone will pay top dollar to see #1. If you're anything less, except to have EXPONENTIALLY (not proportionally!!) less credit. Students who rank #1 have at least a 20% better chance of getting into top schools that students who rank #2! And it gets worse and worse as you go down the list (I guess you should go to a school full of under-achievers, right? :P). This is true in real life and in this movie. I love that the director put this element in there to create this feeling of keeping up in this new fast-paced world.
Wow. Look at the mess of trouble Mark got into just because he did not believe in full-disclosure. It just made me care even more about being fully open and honest and making sure to READ THE FINE PRINT. I'm a tad cynical. I believe in always keeping in mind "this person could really screw me over" until they prove otherwise/somehow gain my trust.
Facebook was not the FIRST idea! Little things matter!
What struck me as the most important thing is that facebook was NOT the FIRST idea. Its not like these boys were super innovative and thought of something that had never been done before. There was already friendster and myspace. What I love about this idea is that it was an improvement on something that already existed. Facebook was the first to launch this improvement. Furthermore, Facebook made sure to keep in mind what people CARED about. It kept the "little things" in mind. People care to know who you're dating. "Coolness" does matter. People want to easily and simply share information. Etc. Etc.
I don't know. I'm a freak for the little things, too. An example screaming at me right now is the font on my blog. I freakin' hate this font. Its WAY too small. The whitespace is not being properly utilized. The letters are too close together. To me, this is important. But if this blog was a joint blog, I wouldn't bring it up in a meeting because it's such a small detail. And then it comes to bite my in the arse later! I don't know why I take for granted me thoughts. Little things matter. And even if they don't, it doesn't hurt to address them. That was just a personal lesson for me.
This is a topic that I personally dealt with a lot last semester. What does it mean to be a good friend? Mark is not a good friend. The lawyer intern said that Mark is TRYING to be an asshole. No, I don't think he's trying. I think he is inconsiderate. He doesn't consider people's feelings. He just says what comes to his mind. No filter. It hurts and he's lucky to have had someone who could see past that to support him in his start up. I'm sure anyone else would simply feel like Mark was using them. And Eduardo... at first I thought he was a good friend. A REALLY good friend. Almost too good. As the movie goes on, I quickly begin to believe he's a doormat. Finally pushed to the edge (and it took some DRASTIC pushing). What did Eduardo see in Mark that made him stay with him?
So that's it for now. I'm ready to discuss or watch the movie again. Let me know what you think!