David Fincher’s narcissistic baby seems to be popping up in the number one slot of everyone’s top ten list. If I had to go on record with early predictions, I’d say the Network will probably take best film, script, and director awards at the Oscars. Once again, David Fincher has shown us that he can make a movie, and he can make it well. The Social Network said the right thing at the right time and spoke with style and an unbelievably quick wit. We could spend weeks talking about the sharp language, intriguing plots and the dramatized portrait of internet tycoon Mark Zuckerberg. David Fincher knew exactly what he was doing when he decided to make a film about the legend instead of making a film about the man. The movie teeter-tottered between factual depositions and creative liberties, telling a story that was larger than any character, actual or fictional. In The Social Network, reality and fantasy moved together effortlessly
So why is The Social Network the caboose of my 2010 train and not chugging along proudly in the front? Because it didn’t click for me. It isn’t the film’s fault; the script was great, the direction was solid, the acting naturally bundled with unorthodox delivery, and the cinematography was beautiful. I just couldn’t bring myself to care. I held no emotional bond with any of the characters, and at times found myself bored with a film about Facebook. The reason why the Network is on my top-ten list is because it is an inarguably good film—maybe even great. But if I was making a top ten favorite films of 2010, this slot would immediately be replaced with Tron: Legacy or Defendor, for entertainment value alone! And with one sentence I managed to piss off moviegoers across the Internets (or at least the handful of those that stumble across my ity-bitty-blog), some of which are rolling over from the link I ironically posted on Facebook.
Is The Social Network a better film than Tron: Legacy or Defendor? Maybe. Is the Network better built? Are the performances stronger? Is it more relevant? Sure. But with all the imperfections Tron’s successor had, it still made made me feel like a kid again. Tron had me wanting to go home and tape recycled cereal boxes and Pringles canisters together in hopes that if I added a flashlight, magnifying glass and a USB chord, my imagination would be able to manifest a laser that could upload my physical self into the grid. Defendor was everything Kick-Ass wanted to be with a fraction of the budget. Where Kick-Ass couldn’t go, Defendor did. The two films share similar themes, but Defendor digs deeper and reveals a personal story about a man with strong morals and weak logic, a simple fellow who decides that he wants to be a superhero, and with the help of his mental illness and some kooky friends, he succeeds…violently, honestly, and emotionally, all while remaining oddly cute. Defendor put me on a neurotic ride of bipolar emotions and left me leaving with a smile on my face. The Social Network—in all its magnificence—left me apathetic.
And with that, I present to you the 10th film of Henry’s Best Movies of 2010. I have been told that I like to play devil’s advocate. Close friends tell me that I walk around with a “fuck your opinion” domineer. I call bullshit! I love and respect your opinions and hope you share each and every single one with me. I hold closely to mine because many will disagree with them, but that’s what makes them valuable for the ones who do agree. I won’t relay acclaimed quotes or recycle unique reviews that popped up on my twitter feed. What I will give you are my very passionate, and at times loud, assessments of what I thought about ten films that stood out during 2010. Throughout January, I will be publishing the rest of the best IMHO.
Henry’s Top Ten Films of 2010 Recap
10. The Social Network