The Social Network

Rated 4.0

In its fascinatingly oblique way, this partially fictionalized biopic about Mark Zuckerberg and the advent of Facebook a little like a super-smart and very ironic makeover of Revenge of the Nerds scampering around in a Citizen Kane-like collage of brilliantly fragmented flashbacks. Yet it’s also a dark but very engaging comedy/drama that combines the talents of writer Aaron Sorkin (West Wing) and director David Fincher (Se7en, Zodiac) in unexpectedly captivating form. The rapid-fire dialogue in Sorkin’s script manages to bring out both the brilliant wit and the immaturity of the characters, most of whom are very smart kids at top-flight schools. And that pell-mell pacing prevails throughout the film, and long after it has gone on to being much more than a romantic comedy or a “youth picture.” Jesse Eisenberg is excellent with Zuckerberg’s nerdy brilliance. His misadventures with assorted friends, collaborators and rivals is the main thrust of the tale, but The Social Network takes on an extra dimension of energy and interest when Napster founder Sean Parker (a roistering Justin Timberlake) comes into the story midway. Feather River Cinemas, Paradise Cinema 7 and Tinseltown. Rated PG-13