The Social Network

The Social Network

Trailer

Questions for Reflection

  • The Social Network screen writer Aaron Sorkin told New York Magazine, "I don't want my fidelity to be to the truth; I want it to be to story-telling.” What’s the difference? Does it matter to you which details in the film are accurate and which ones are made up?
  • One version of the film’s trailer sets images from the film against the background of a choir singing Radiohead’s “Creep.” Here’s a portion of the song’s lyrics: “I don't care if it hurts / I want to have control / I want a perfect body / I want a perfect soul / I want you to notice when I'm not around / You're so very special / I wish I was special / But I'm a creep / I'm a weirdo / What the hell am I doing here? / I don't belong here.” How does the use of this song interpret the film as a whole?
  • Several characters make arguments for and against advertising on The Facebook. What’s “uncool” about advertising?
  • Reviewer Alissa Wilkinson writes, “Millenials are defined by their craving to belong…. They're willing to radically redefine the idea of privacy—to post their political views and favorite bands and pictures from summer vacation on a website for their ‘friends’ to see—in order to gain that sense of belonging.” Does this describe you?
  • Wilkinson also writes, “While The Social Network is a glossy, sexy film, it's mostly not about glossy, sexy people.” How does this film’s portrayal of “nerds” compare to others like Superbad or Napoleon Dynamite?
  • Most people who see this film have Facebook accounts themselves. How does this film make you feel about participating in Facebook? Do you think the film is intended to make you (re)consider your participation?
  • Do you feel sympathy for Zuckerberg’s character in the film? What about those who become his enemies?
  • Noting that director David Fincher is drawn to stories about rebels, reviewer Jeffrey Overstreet writes, “The Social Network is about how one disgruntled nobody stole power from the privileged and established a new social environment.” In what ways is Zuckerberg a rebel? Is he successful? Is he noble or admirable?
  • Overstreet begins his review with a paraphrase of I Corinthians 1:3: “If I speak in HTML, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of social networking, master Facebook’s privacy settings, and accept 5,000 friend requests, but have not love, I am nothing.”
  • Female characters mostly stalk the periphery of this film as crazy (ex)girlfriends, party favors and objects of lust. Rebecca David O’Brien asks, “[W]hat is the state of things if a film that keeps women on the outer circles of male innovation enjoys such critical acclaim; indeed, is heralded as the ‘defining’ story of our age?”