Screenplay Review: The Social Network.
Reading bad scripts can bog you down and lately it was kind of depressing me. I always want stories to succeed and it annoys me when they don’t. But every once in a while you get a script that just knocks you off your feet. I’m not just talking from a story standpoint, but from an overall quality of writing. I’ve read great stories before that didn’t necessarily need a superior quality of writing. And I’ll be honest, when I first heard a movie was going to be made about Facebook I said to myself, “Umm…what?”
I imagine that would be everyone’s reaction because why is it necessary to make a movie about Facebook? I didn’t see how this could possibly be a good thing. Then Aaron Sorkin came along.
A little Aaron Sorkin refresher. He wrote A Few Good Men and Charlie Wilson’s War, created The West Wing (which won four consecutive Emmy’s for Outstanding Drama Series from 2000-2003) and even recently guest starred on Entourage as Andrew Kline’s potential client who he drove his car through his own kitchen for. A bit of an elaboration, but that’s how good a writer Aaron Sorkin is.
Hearing that a writer the quality of Sorkin had decided to take on the Facebook movie raises the eyebrow a little bit; reading the script drops the jaw. It’s that good. When I first opened the file and saw that it was 162 pages I thought, “I don’t have time for this right now.” But once I got a taste, I couldn’t stop. I set out to read a few pages, before I knew it I was on 45. I had to read it in pieces cause I didn’t have time for a straight read (which I prefer) but it didn’t matter. It was constantly on my mind when I wasn’t reading it.
Essentially, The Social Network is about the creation of Facebook. Our protagonist is Mark Zuckerberg; he’s a fascinating character and the story tracks the early months of the site’s inception, who was involved, and why certain people eventually came to file lawsuits against him for hundreds of millions of dollars. Some felt Zuckerberg stole their idea, another felt he was pushed out of the company which he helped start from nothing.
It’s a phenomenal script, from start to finish, and a fascinating story. What I find most interesting is how relevant, and relatable it is. Facebook has over 200 million active users, and you’re lying if you say you don’t enjoy at least some aspect of it, because if you didn’t, then you wouldn’t be on it. Could this movie be a box office hit? I think it really could, because nearly everyone has a connection to Facebook and whether it’s good or bad, it’s probably unique in some way. It could be big, and it could be great.
p.s. Oh, by the way, David Fincher is directing it. Fight Club, Seven, Zodiac & The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, among others. It WILL be great.
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