The Social Network: Facebook 'Hit Job' or Masterpiece?
It's official. The Social Network's opening weekend was a success after the film finished first at the box office and raked in $23 million in the U.S. and Canada. The film recounts a highly fictionalized version of Facebook's founding, and is being hailed by the majority of movie critics. Rolling Stone's Pete Travers said the film is "bracingly smart, brutally funny and acted to perfection."
But not everyone is happy with The Social Network. The movie is accused by some as being a hit job on the so-called geeks at the center of the film. That may be one reason Facebook CEO and co-founder Mark Zuckerberg has indicated he won't see the movie. Nevertheless, the Facebook crew reportedly booked a local California theater to see the movie last Friday.
Here's your post weekend wrap-up for The Social Network.
Facebook is the most popular social network on the planet, and The Social Network is the number one movie at the box office, according to The Los Angeles Times.
While $23 million is not a lot compared to Avatar's blockbuster opening weekend of nearly $80 million, The Social Network was by far the most popular movie last weekend. Films taking the second and third place box office titles were respectively Legend of the Guardians and Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps. Both films pulled in about $21 million combined.
Everyone Likes The Social Network
The movie-rating site Rotten Tomatoes says The Social Network is certified fresh with a 97 percent favorable rating. Rotten Tomatoes aggregates movie reviews from published critics and then gives the movie an average score.
The Social Network's rating is currently based on 173 reviews, including those of New York magazine, Slate, MTV, and many local newspapers such as the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Kansas City Star and San Jose Mercury News. Audience members scoring the movie on Rotten Tomatoes ranked The Social Network a little lower than the critics, giving it an 81 percent approval rating.
Defriending The Social Network
Despite the movie's popularity, a small group of naysayers do not like the film for its underlying message -- at least as they see it. "[The movie] doesn't understand entrepreneurs and geeks, or at least not the one here. So it turns [Zuckerberg] into an other. It makes him weird," wrote blogger, author, and journalism professor Jeff Jarvis. Jose Antonio Vargas, who profiled Zuckerberg for The New Yorker, agreed writing for The Huffington Post that "The Social Network is a Hollywood movie about a topic that Hollywood fails to understand." Venture Beat recently reported that Matt Cohler, a venture capitalist and former Facebook employee, said the movie's portrayal of Zuckerberg is "just wrong."
The Daily Beast's Rebecca Davis O'Brien dinged the movie for failing to understand a different demographic: women. O'Brien said The Social Network was "an impressive film," but took issue with how women are depicted in the movie. Calling the film's women "foils for the male characters, who in turn are cruel or indifferent to them."
Does Facebook Like The Social Network?
Facebook staffers reportedly descended en masse to a theater in Mountain View, California on Friday to take in the movie about their company and its founders, according to Mashable.
It wasn't clear if Zuckerberg joined his employees to see the movie, as he has reportedly said he wouldn't watch it. But The New York Times reported on Sunday that Zuckerberg did attend the Friday screening.
Have you seen The Social Network yet? What did you think of the movie?