The Social Network

For me, The Social Network is a film that I can always look at and be amazed at how it was filmed, edited, and scored. It is not just a film about Facebook like many people think. In fact, the story is very dramatized and diverts from what actually happened to these people in real life. David Fincher wanted to make a film about greed, power and corruption, so he used the Facebook story as an inspiration and a backdrop. Yes it was a controversial film because of its misinterpretation of the truth, but the important thing to remember is that he was not trying to make a total reproduction of past events. His aim was not to make a typical college life film, which is why this film appears so dark in nature. This “darkness” is achieved by the lighting and musical score.

The particular scene I chose to examine the lighting used in the film takes place inside of a club in San Francisco. Mark Zuckerberg (Jesse Eisenburg) and Sean Parker (Justin Timberlake) are conversing together about how Facebook can grow even more, and about how Mark shouldn’t settle for anything. Parker wants to push Mark further and further towards monetary success, but more importantly he wants to show him how Mark can potentially revolutionize an industry. Parker was of course the guy who founded Napster and revolutionized the music industry by weakening record companies. He influences Mark in ways that Mark doesn’t even realize, and he pushes him farther and farther away from the partnership he began with Eduardo Saverin, Mark’s best friend. In this way, Parker is displayed as a sinister force in this film. He drives Mark to leave Eduardo behind, and he manipulates him every chance he gets. The scene in the club had to have been lit by external lighting sources and could not have relied solely on the lights inside the club. Both Zuckerberg and Parker are very dimly lit in this scene, but the light playing off Parker’s face makes him look evil and conniving. Lit any other way and this scene would not have had the dramatic effect it achieves. Parker manipulates Zuckerberg in this scene, and the light and shadows on Mark’s face also reflect how is soul and character are being corrupted by Sean Parker.

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