Social network was a fantastic movie for a lot of reasons: the directing by David Fincher, the music by Trent Reznor, the acting of almost everyone involved and, of course, the script by Aaron Sorkin. It’s Sorkin’s hallmark, with dialogue stacked over more dialogue and characters expressing so many different things at once, and it all feels good. But what makes it great is the structure of the storyline and how Fincher also scaled down some of that Sorkin-ness hallmark.
As The lessons of the scenario examines in this breakdown of the movie script, there are some awesome scenes in the movie that are just pages and pages of dialogue. A lot of things can be compelling in and of themselves because it happens to you so quickly (the memorable opening scene, for example), but it takes it to another level because the structure (jumping into Facebook’s creation timeline testimony during trial) allows the film to show you what happened – while the characters can also tell you how they felt about what happened.
Fincher also does a great job of shaking Sorkin and editing him, as you can see in the video below, and it keeps the words in the script from falling in love on their own. (Plus, it doesn’t hurt that Fincher knows exactly when to hold onto a shot and when to keep cutting.) Sorkin is magnificent at what he does, but his collaboration with Fincher has brought out the best in his work. Basically it all adds up to a perfect combination of what was on the page and what ended up on the screen.