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Movie Review

I just saw The Social Network and I am somewhat surprised to say that it exactly fit my expectations, though I was less annoyed by it than I expected to be.

That something should surprise me when it fits my expectations is the meta-nature of life.

The reason I didn't want to see it was that I expected to be reminded of a very unrealistic yet low level resentment that I still carry that I was there at the dot com boom, I lived in the Valley, in SF, passed by people who knew these people, went to those clubs and knew people who dated those people... made what was an astonishing amount as a free wheeling coder for a time... and yet somehow didn't manage to come away a dot com millionaire.
Unreasonable? Yes. But it's there.
But the movie didn't leave me with an overwhelming amount of personal resentment.

Instead, it was a bright, shining, whizzing display of Aaron Sorkin's too fast and too clever dialogue where women show up to make that very perspicacious emotionally driven comment at just the right time and men make clever witty remarks and then fuck each other over for millions of dollars.

I thought that implying rather unsubtlely throughout the film that the force behind Mark Zuckerberg's monomaniacal drive was his frustration with women, and/or his heartbreak over one woman. Even if that were true, men never admit that, not to themselves and certainly not to other men. It was too bad, because the portrayal of Zuckerberg as a blindingly intelligent but borderline Aspberger's savant did ring very accurate to me (I know many people like this, though much softer less assholely type people), so to lay the blame for a "nerd"'s behavior at the altar of trying to be cool with women does nerds, women and assholes all an injustice. I think people are a bit more complex than this.

Was it 97% tomato-meter fresh? No. Was it well done? Sure. D. agreed as both an accomplished coder and lawyer that while the tech and the law stuff was stretched at times (even without QA no one adds two fields, writes the UI, modifies the database schema, and writes the CRUD in 5 lines of code and 7 seconds)... but on the whole still reasonably accurate.

I'm still (again) not on facebook. And I'm not sorry.

And the one thing I learned from this movie was something I already knew. Start a company with women. Who fucks over a friend out of 30% of a company? Even if deserved... without *TALKING TO THEM FIRST?* Not the women I work with.
OK, I just reread that and realized it's pointlessly sexist: Not the men in my life either. Not real friends.
I guess I learned: Don't start a company with Mark Zuckerberg or Sean whatshishead Timberlake. Don't work with assholes.

Comments

( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
flipzagging
Nov. 2nd, 2010 01:51 am (UTC)
I've been looking into it and talking to a few people... very little of the movie has anything to do with what really happened, especially when they ascribe motivations.

Zuckerberg and Parker aren't much like the way they are portrayed. Zuckerberg, although given to robotic diction, speaks slowly, was an athlete (fencing), couldn't care less about final clubs, and had a girlfriend during the entire period the movie documents -- the same one he has now. The hacking scene is indeed taken from his blog verbatim, but they made up all the really misogynistic quotes (there is no bra size comment, nor does he disparage his girlfriend's ancestry or all the women at BU). He might be a dick, but he's not quite the dick they portrayed him as.

Parker is a bon vivant, but not mean and dismissive like he is portrayed. The incident with the underage intern girl did happen, but it occurred at someone's beach house, not at a frat party. The cocaine wasn't found on anyone's person (much less anyone's stomach), but a cop produced a baggie of it, saying he found it in a bathroom.

Dustin Moskovitz is barely in the film (he's comic relief in a few scenes) but was apparently a huge driving force.

The pajamas meeting with "Case Capital", actually Sequoia, had nothing to do with Sean Parker delivering a fuck-you to a VC. It was just a very silly pitch for a P2P project they were developing on the side.

In any case, had Eduardo Saverin accepted 0.03% of Facebook that would be (by my calculations) 7.5 million for less than $10,000 of investment and a relatively unproductive run as CFO for a few months. As some people have noted, the only "accidental billionaire" is Saverin.
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )

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