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Member's Reviews

The Social Network, a review by Critter

The Social Network

Director: David Fincher


I went into this film not knowing a hell of a lot about it… sure I knew it was basically about the guy who invented Facebook, but as far as the actual story behind it all I knew nothing. That being said I don’t know how much of this film is a fabrication, or if it is indeed the plain and simple truth behind the world’s youngest billionaire. Either way I was left somewhat disgruntled by the a few aspects of this film, in particular by its portrayal of women, but I will get to that soon.

This was not a bad film in any sense of the word and I quite enjoyed it for the most part. I find that some films based around court cases can be quite dull, but this one had my attention from the start and kept it right to the final credits. This film was made well, and for the most part acted extremely well. The editing and use of music was especially good and made a film that is basically about court room drama and computer nerds quite exciting. My biggest complaint however, as I mentioned at the start was how females in general are portrayed in this film. Basically every single girl in this film is seen as a drunken whore. Girls are seen drunk, doing drugs, making out with each other for male entertainment and just in general acting like unintelligent morons while the genius males do all the work around them. Okay, I do say “every single” girl there but that’s a lie, there are two female characters in this film that aren’t complete morons (only two) and both of them don’t even have much screen time, one of which has very few lines.

Indeed the whole film has a somewhat misogynistic feel to it which is unfortunate and lessened the amount I could enjoy it. At the same time though I do somewhat understand why this is the route that the film took as the lead character himself is simply put… a jerk. Okay, he may be some sort of child prodigy with computers and invented one of the world’s newest and most important online tools, but he was never quite presented as a hero. Anti-hero would be a term to proper describe Mark Zuckerburg as many of his traits, including the way he treats women and his friends are highly questionable. With that being said it is understandable why the makers of this film chose to surround him and his fellow nerds with these stereotypical drunken, drugged-up college girls as really no girl with even half a brain would go anywhere near these guys. Even though that may be the case I found the portrayal still got on my nerves and made me suddenly very thankful for characters such as Lisbeth Salander in today’s films.

Rating: 3½/5

(From The Social Network on November 2nd, 2010)

Member's Reviews

The Scarlet Empress, a review by Antares

The Scarlet Empress (1934) 2/5 - If we all watched films for the Art Direction, and only for that reason, then The Scarlet Empress would be talked of in the same breath as Citizen Kane. Unfortunately for the viewer, Josef von Sternberg's vision of czarist Russia in the 18th century is a schizophrenic mess. If you are going to tell the tale of Catherine the Great, then you should really focus on the political intrigues that took place during her forced marriage to the eccentric Tsar Peter III. Instead, von Sternberg spends the first hour just getting her from Prussia to Russia, and after she arrives, it appears as if she’s being held hostage in a gothic horror house. The story just never gels, with most of the cast either being somnambular in their performances or outright over the top. And as much as I love Marlene Dietrich, her performance can best be described as amateurish in the beginning and reminiscent of The Blue Angel in the end. Maybe it was the daily tongue lashings that she received from von Sternberg that brought about this very weak performance, but she has never looked so woefully pitiful in a portrayal. I’ve read a few reviews that state that this is one of von Sternberg’s best, but for the life of me, if this is his best, I don’t want to see his worst.

(From Antares' Short Summations on March 11th, 2014)

Member's TV Reviews

"Battlestar Galactica" Marathon (1978-2009), a review by DJ Doena

Disc 6

Baltar's Escape
Synopsis: Baltar, the Borellians and the soldiers of the Eastern Alliance plan to escape from the prison barge. And they succeed. Aboard the Galactica they take the Quorum members as hostages (except for Adama and Siress Tinia). Adama has to either let them go or he has to try to free the Quorum members with the risk of getting them killed.

My Opinion: I really liked the irony of this episode's title and the fact that Baltar was the only one who didn't escape. And the moment I saw the dismantled Cylons and Apollo stating that he had a plan I really believed (and hoped) that he and Starbuck would slip into the armour and pretend to be Cylon pilots. Too bad they didn't make that move, that would have been fun.

Experiment in Terra
Synopsis: When the squadron is following the escaped prisoners to Lunar 7, Apollo is suddenly brought aboard the ship of light again. There he's warned of a great danger Terra is in and that it's important for them, for the people in the fleet and even for the light beings that he helps the people on Terra. When he lands there he's recognized as someone else but he has little success in convincing them. Luckily Starbuck and also the Galactica aren't that far behind.

My Opinion: I really liked Edward Mulhare (Devon in Knight Rider) in the role of John. He was a funny guy and yet recognizable as the father figure he would later become to Michael Knight. But I also liked that Terra wasn't Earth, I didn't like the Terra storyline very much.

Take the Celestra
Synopsis: During a ceremony Starbuck discovers that an old girlfriend of his is still alive and did not die on Caprica as he had suspected. Cassiopeia isn't very thrilled but there's also not much she can do. Starbuck and Apollo follow Aurora  to the Celestra and run in the middle of a mutiny. And Aurora is of course among the mutineers. But not everything is as it appears to be.

My Opinion: It was an OK episode. But it was a bit constructed that the XO developed the plan to get rid of his captain and miraculously a mutiny started in just that moment and gave him the opportunity. The captain also seemed to have lost touch with his crew, otherwise he had to notice that his XO was a "slave driver". But he still got a medal for his excellent leadership.

The Hand of God
Synopsis: The Galactica receives a signal that might have come from Earth but soon they detect a hidden Basestar that is looking for them. But Adama and Tigh are both tired of running. Adama develops a plan to attack and destroy the Basestar and its Raiders. Apollo and Starbuck get the most crucial role in that attack: They have to board the Basestar and to destroy its sensors. Both Cassiopeia and Sheba aren't very happy about it.

My Opinion: I really liked that final episode of the old series. It had the right amount (and quality) of humour and charm in it and also a good deal of action - even though they re-used the FX shots once again, there were so many and even some new shots that it looked really good. I also liked the idea that Apollo and Sheba may become a couple, Apollo had been alone since Serina died.

The Series - My Opinion: I will miss these guys. I really like the new series. But it's different there. The old series had its own charm and the characters are still great. Granted, a lot of the episodes have aged a lot and don't hold up in comparison to today's shows but it was still nice to see characters that aren't burdened with a difficult past but are straightforward WYSIWYGs.

(From "Battlestar Galactica" Marathon (1978-2009) on April 17th, 2009)