We went to see The Social Network last Friday with Isabella and Joe and seeing as it was better than expected I thought I'd post something about it. I won't waste anyone's time by explaining what the Facebook phenomenon is, everyone knows, but perhaps, like me, you don't know quite so much about the back-story and this is what the film attempts to tell.
Now, I know anything that gets the Hollywood treatment has to be taken with a heart-stopping dose of salt, facts, historical accuracy and honesty should never be allowed to get in the way of a good story, so I tried not to take what I was seeing too literally but what struck me was that Zuckerberg (played by Jesse Eisenberg) is strikingly similar to a lot of the higher-level nerds I've worked with in my career: zero social skills, devoid of a working sense of humour, an almost total lack of empathy and loyalty and a child-like ability to be lead astray by anyone that seems even remotely 'cool'.
Sadly Zuckerberg manages to demonstrate all of these 'qualities' to a highly evolved level but what I found most interesting amongst all the backstabbing and geekery was the influence of the one-time Napster CEO and founder, Sean Parker (played by the one and only Justin Timberlake). I had no idea he had his fingers in the Facebook pie but if how he's played on-screen is true then I shouldn't be surprised at all.
I won't spoil the film by giving away too much because it's worth seeing but I left the cinema thinking the way Zuckerberg has created his Facebook empire and amassed a vast sum of money at the expense of those close to him quite depressing. What's the point in achievement if it can't be shared with those that helped? Facebook is the biggest thing to happen in a generation, it's not just a case of choosing to be on it, we almost have to be on it and yet the person that built (I won't say invented) this wonderful tool, if we believe what we're told in the film, has no real friends left apart from perhaps the weasely Parker. There's something distinctly sad about that.