The Social Network Divides Generations

Older people see Zuckerberg as tragic; youth as a visionary
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 4, 2010 10:21 AM CDT
In this publicity image released by Columbia Pictures, Justin Timberlake, left, and Jesse Eisenberg are shown in a scene from "The Social Network."   (AP)
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(Newser) The Social Network is officially a hit—it won the weekend box office—but different viewers came away with wildly different impressions, according to David Carr of the New York Times. Older people see it as a cautionary tale about a young man who betrays all his friends and principles. Younger people see a story of a visionary who did what he had to do to create something huge.

“When you talk to people afterward, it was as if they were seeing two different films,” says one producer. “The older audiences see Zuckerberg as a tragic figure … while young people see him as completely enhanced, a rock star.” Jesse Eisenberg says he’s experienced the same thing. “I was asked by older people again and again how I could play a character who is capable of being so mean,” the 26-year-old actor says.

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