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Movie Review: The Social Network

Alternate Title: Vox Populi

Story: This terrific film with its built-in fan base of 500,000,000 would be a hit even if it wasn't as top-notch. It has everything going for it. It is contemporary, fast paced, filled with fascinating characters and even if I am not sure how true it is - I bought it hook, line and sinker. I cannot imagine seeing a better film this year.

The tale goes as follows: young Harvard student Mark Zuckerberg gets dumped by his girlfriend. In a rage or a hissy fit, depending on your viewpoint, he blogs, trashes her and simultaneously creates a site that crashes Harvard's circuits. Perhaps the Big Bang Theory is in place here. The seminal idea of facebook is gray, but it is in living color as it is brought to the big screen by director David Fincher (Fight Club, Seven, Zodiac) and writer Aaron Sorkin (West Wing was my favorite TV show of all time) and was based on the book The Accidental Billionaires, by Ben Mezrich.

The film goes back and forth from how facebook was started, how it grew and who was involved juxtaposed with the legal depositions of those that felt they were shafted, shunted or defriended as they try to get their day in court and a large piece of the money pie.

Do you have to be on facebook to enjoy this film? Absolutely not. This is a dramatization of the first order. It is not a documentary. Facebook is a phenomenon that describes our culture and hits on the perfect echo chamber of our need for narcissistic amplification. And yes, as soon as I upload this review to my blog it is linked directly to my facebook page. Wanna friend me?

Watch the trailer here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mWoUgftTj3Y

Acting: Jesse Eisenberg as Mark Zuckerberg hits another one out of the ball park. Andrew Garfield as Eduardo Saverin turns in a fine performance. Justin Timberlake as Napster's Sean Parker is suitably revved up and perfect. Armie Hammer as Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss is terrific. Max Minghella as Divya Narendra is fine. Rooney Mara as the pissed off girlfriend, Erica Albright was believeable. The balance of the cast is great including: Brenda Song (Christy), Rashida Jones (Marylin Delpy), John Getz (Sy), David Selby (Gage), Denise Grayson (Gretchen), Douglas Urbanski (Larry Summers), Aaron Sorkin (Ad Executive) and James Shanklin (Prince Albert).

Trivia: Rooney Mara is going to play Lisbeth Salander in the US versions of 'The Girl Who...' series. Writer Aaron Sorkin plays the ad executive in the film. Jesse Eisenberg's mother is a professional clown who performed at children's birthday parties in their hometown of East Brunswick, N.J. for 20 years. Eisenberg created OneUpMe.com. It is a daily wordplay game of similes that fosters abstract and creative thought.

Predilection: I am on facebook and I love Aaron Sorkin's writing.

Critters: A much talked about chicken.

Sex Spectrum: Some fumbling.

Opening Titles: A short sequence showing the 'break-up' of Mark Zuckerberg and his girlfriend Erica Albright followed by the title and credits as Zuckerberg runs back to his dorm room to blog and conceive of an idea.

Theater Audience: About 30 'friends.'

Sappy Factor: 0

Quirky Meter: 0

Squirm Scale: 0

Drift Factor: I was riveted throughout.

Predictability Level: If you know the story you will not be surprised.

Tissue Usage: 0

Oscar Worthy: Absolutely.

Big Screen or Rental: Go for the big screen with some of your friends (or meet new ones).

Length: Two hours

LOBO HOWLS: 9.5