It’s no secret I liked the Facebook movie, The Social Network. Not because Aaron Sorkin grossly sensualized or flat out changed details and aspects to make the story more compelling. Nor because Trent Reznor added a wicked awesome soundtrack that moved me to bop along to the melodic beats of base in my seat. And not because Justin Timberlake made Sean Parker appear significantly more attractive and cooler than I assume he ever was, is or will be. In all honesty, the film more closely resembles Clerks than The Hurt Locker.
I liked it because I identify and empathize with the nerds, geeks and dorks of the world and I was tired of seeing this stereotype beat up and bullied (or as I stated in this TV Blogo interview, “shoved into lockers”) time and time again in film and television. It was nice to see intellect triumph over brawn or prominence of family pedigree – literally the little guy prevail.
The world has changed. The Social Network demarcates a seminal point in the history of humankind – where more and more our lives are being lived in a virtual world and as I’ve noted previously, the people who are skilled in this environment wield tremendous power and influence. Senators and heads of states are literally flocking to Silicon Valley to understand – to comprehend – the power of technology. You control the medium, you control the process, you control the message and the outcome. This is Darwinism, this is survival of the fittest.
So while The Social Network is lacking in many factually correct details, whether folks like it or not, Mark Zuckerberg is our modern day Braveheart – the Gladiator of geeks. And he’s alive. Not simply a relic of the past. He is the future. The fact that his story was made into a major Hollwood film, an industry dominated by sports stars, war heroes and action figures, is significant.
Tinseltown makes no secret it loves a good “rags to riches” underdog story, which is why (although I have no doubt Colin Firth’s portrayal of King George VI will rightfully win him Best Actor), The Social Network should and will take home Best Picture. It is the true sequel to War Games. It is our zeitgeist.