Does anyone really care about the Facebook Movie? Or, for that matter, Facebook? Sure, Facebook currently boasts 250 million users, and Mark Zuckerberg had his official coming-out party as a mogul on Oprah a few months back, but all that really means is that your Mom is now on Facebook, sending you Growing Gifts once a week, trying to friend your friends, forcing your guilty conscience to take down your many stoned pics, while you take refuge more and more on Twitter, where you're safe for now, where your Mom will only migrate to in a few years once she's figured out its goshdarned lingo ("Twitted...or tweeted?"). So I guess what I'm really asking is, does your mom care about the Facebook movie? And will she actually spend $14 on a movie ticket to see how the most popular social networking site came to be?
These are the questions I had while slogging through Aaron Sorkin's 162-page first draft of The Social Network, aka The Facebook Movie, based on Ben Mezrich's book, The Accidental Billionaires, that was written without Zuckerberg's cooperation and came out this week. (Mezrich also wrote Bringing Down the House, about the MIT blackjack team who stole millions from various Vegas casinos, which became the movie 21.) Facebook reps have declined to comment on the book, and employees were reportedly sent letters months ago telling them not to speak with Sorkin.
One reason Zuckerberg and Co. might not care about -- or rather, care for -- the Facebook Movie is that, contrary to reports that the script makes him out to be an "obnoxious nerd," The Social Network does him one worse: it makes him into a dull one. He spends a sizable chunk of the script's 162 pages sitting in a deposition room, talking to lawyers, getting sued by two different parties. There are a few scenes in which he is either seen writing code or...wait for it...talking about writing code. HTML code, people! Other than getting laid by an Asian chick in a bathroom stall at a "nice club in Cambridge..(playing)...thumping...house music" -- whatever that means -- Zuckerberg's life comes across as a rather joyless verging on meaningless grind.
Even Sean Parker, who was anointed the "rock star" of The Social Network in another script review, isn't a particularly interesting Silicon Valley bad boy. We're supposed to believe that he's some kind of 22 year-old visionary iconoclast, but he comes off more like a mid-level Hollywood douchebag.
He orders lacquered pork and foie gras and appletinis at a trendy Tribeca eatery (p. 102)!
He dates a Victoria's Secret model (p. 121)!
He goes to a sorority party and makes a phone call explaining the significance of picture-sharing while a 17 year-old girl sprinkles coke on her boobs nearby (p. 154)! Then gets busted!
Scintillating stuff, right? David Fincher seems to think so. And maybe, just maybe, your Mom will, too. If she hasn't moved on to Twitter by the time the movie comes out, and isn't too busy figuring out what the deal is with RT's and #'s.