The Social Network

Rated 3.0

To be honest, that earnestly self-delighted trailer, with the heated-drama highlight reel and the choir singing Radiohead’s “Creep,” might have been all we needed. But with Jesse Eisenberg as Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, Justin Timberlake as Napster founder Sean Parker, a script by Aaron Sorkin (from Ben Mezrich’s book The Accidental Billionaires) and director David Fincher knowing he owes us one after The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, this online-culture origin myth will be glad to perpetuate itself. There’s a mesmerizing satisfaction to be had from recognizing the appropriateness of this material for its makers: Eisenberg nailing Sorkin’s smug, windy dialogue, plus the fussy technician Fincher hoisting heavy melodramatic emotions as if with calipers equals alienation-tainment! But it’s still the shopworn archetypal framework of an ambition-driven morality tale, with too much network administration—the old boys talking down to young boys, whose likes also include Andrew Garfield, Armie Hammer and Max Minghella.