Weekend Forecast for October 1-3, 2010
By Reagen Sulewski
October 1, 2010
Two of the year's most anticipated films hit the multiplexes this weekend, as well as two horror films. Unfortunately for one of the horror films, there's some overlap between those two categories.
Love it or hate it (or both at the same time), Facebook has become an omnipresent fact of life in modern society. Originally started as a social connection site for Harvard students, it's slowly spread outward to the rest of the world with the unstated goal of moving as much of human interaction as possible online. The Social Network purports to tell the story of Mark Zuckerberg, founder (or “founder”, depending on who you believe) of Facebook.
As scripted by Aaron Sorkin (who you'll likely see on Oscar night), it's a sort of very low-key techno-business-thriller, The Social Network is one of those zeitgeist films that captures the spirit of a time, which its director, David Fincher, has a particular knack for. Only in this case, he's aiming for more than just millennial malaise or disaffected 20-somethings – he's going for the whole shebang.
Jesse Eisenberg plays Zuckerberg from his humble beginnings when he was just a comp sci student trying to score women in an ineffectual way - through his ridiculous rapid run up to become a billionaire mogul in just a handful of years, while alienating just about everyone he ran into. His passion, some might say obsession, about social status with the rich kids he was surrounded with was the impetus for the mainstreaming of the social network society. And then we made Farmville with it. Yay us.
The rest of the cast is basically full of unknowns and That Guys and Girls, with one exception. Justin Timberlake, who's becoming disgustingly too good at too many things, plays Napster founder Sean Parker, the guy who really turned Facebook into a behemoth. But then the cast isn't what's going to really attract people – it's the subject matter and the rave reviews. While not every review is rapturous in its praise, they're almost universal in their positive direction. It's the first film of 2010 that's pretty much guaranteed to be on the short list on Oscar night for Best Picture. Analogs are hard to come by for The Social Network as far as its box office potential – I find myself looking back to films like Network, which obviously don't have a lot of relevance to modern box office. Instead we're left with Fincher's solid record and to give it the Critically Acclaimed Oscar Movie box office, and with a subject that everyone is familiar with, could find around $27 million this weekend.
The first of two horror movies this weekend is Let Me In, a remake of 2008 Swedish import Let the Right One In, about a young (in appearance, if not age) vampire and the outcast school boy who decides to befriend her (it?). The original was remarkable for its bleak setting, uncompromising violence and dark humor, and much of that seems to have survived the translation, in a bit of an upset.