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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

 

The Social Network [Blu-ray]

 

(David Fincher, 2010)

 

    

    

 

Review by Gary Tooze

 

Production:

Theatrical: Columbia Pictures

Video: Sony Pictures

 

Disc:

Region: 'A'-locked (as verified by the Momitsu region FREE Blu-ray player)

Runtime: 2:00:27.220

Disc Size: 32,005,229,140 bytes

Feature Size: 30,637,277,184 bytes

Video Bitrate: 25.91 Mbps

Chapters: 16

Case: Custom Blu-ray case

Release date: January 11th, 2011

 

Video:

Aspect ratio: 2.39:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Audio:

DTS-HD Master Audio English 2923 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 2923 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
DTS-HD Master Audio French 2215 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 2215 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps
Commentaries:

Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps / Dolby Surround
Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps / Dolby Surround

 

Subtitles:

English (SDH), English, French, Spanish, none

 

Extras:

• Audio Commentary with David Fincher
Audio commentary with Writer Aaron Sorkin and cast
 

Exclusive HD Content (2nd Blu-ray disc - single layered)
How Did They Ever Make a Movie of Facebook?: a feature-length documentary in four parts (1:32:43 in HD!)
David Fincher and Jeff Cronenweth on the Visuals (7:48 in HD!)
Angus Wall, Kirk Baxter and Ren Klyce on Post (17:20 in HD!)
Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross and David Fincher on the Score (18:55 in HD!)
Ruby Skye VIP Room: Multi-Angle Scene Breakdown
In the Hall of the Mountain King: Reznor's First Draft
Swarmatron
y (4:28 in HD!)

 

Bitrate:

 

 

Description: David Fincher’s The Social Network is the stunning tale of a new breed of cultural insurgent: a punk genius who sparked a revolution and changed the face of human interaction for a generation, and perhaps forever. Shot through with emotional brutality and unexpected humor, this superbly crafted film chronicles the formation of Facebook and the battles over ownership that followed upon the website’s unfathomable success. With a complex, incisive screenplay by Aaron Sorkin and a brilliant cast including Jesse Eisenberg, Andrew Garfield and Justin Timberlake, The Social Network bears witness to the birth of an idea that rewove the fabric of society even as it unraveled the friendship of its creators.

 

 

"The Social Network" explores the moment at which Facebook, the most revolutionary social phenomena of the new century,... was invented -- through the warring perspectives of the super-smart young men who each claimed to be there at its inception. The result is a drama rife with both creation and destruction; one that audaciously avoids a singular POV, but instead, by tracking dueling narratives, mirrors the clashing truths and constantly morphing social relationships that define our time. Drawn from multiple sources, the film captures the visceral thrill of the heady early days of a culture-changing phenomenon in the making -- and the way it both pulled a group of young revolutionaries together and then split them apart.

 

 

The Film:

What makes Mark Zuckerberg run? In “The Social Network,” David Fincher’s fleet, weirdly funny, exhilarating, alarming and fictionalized look at the man behind the social-media phenomenon Facebook — 500 million active users, oops, friends, and counting — Mark runs and he runs, sometimes in flip-flops and a hoodie, across Harvard Yard and straight at his first billion. Quick as a rabbit, sly as a fox, he is the geek who would be king or just Bill Gates. He’s also the smartest guy in the room, and don’t you forget it.

The first time you see Mark (Jesse Eisenberg, firing on all cylinders), he’s 19 and wearing a hoodie stamped with the word Gap, as in the clothing giant, but, you know, also not. Eyes darting, he is yammering at his girlfriend, Erica (Rooney Mara), whose backhand has grown weary. As they swat the screenwriter Aaron Sorkin’s words at each other, the two partners quickly shift from offline friends to foes, a foreshadowing of the emotional storms to come. Soon Mark is back in his dorm, pounding on his keyboard and inadvertently sowing the seeds of Facebook, first by blogging about Erica and then by taking his anger out on the rest of Harvard’s women, whose photos he downloads for cruel public sport: is she hot or not.

Excerpt from Manohla Dargis at the NY Times located HERE

Image :    NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.

The Social Network looks solid on Blu-ray from Sony.  It carries over the theatrical appearance adeptly.  The film is fairly dark and like Fincher's Se7en has a golden, yellowish hue to it. Skin tones seem a shade warm at time and contrast exhibits healthy, rich black levels. Daylight scenes are more revealing and some minor flaring from the Red One Digital Camera used is barely notable. The final print format was 35mm. There is minimal noise and decent detail. This Blu-ray reports the same image quality I watched in the cinema - and I can't distinguish any differences. There is some subtly probing cinematography by Jeff Cronenweth that is still established in this format.  This is 1080P and in-around the 2.39:1 aspect ratio. The Blu-ray upholds the filmmakers intentions accurately. The transfer really has no flaws.

 

CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Audio :

Like the video the audio for The Social Network is without any weaknesses. We get a DTS-HD Master 5.1 at 2923 kbps. It sounds as intended - sometimes a bit scattered adding the verité feel. Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross' original score (as discussed in the second disc extras) sounds perfectly in sync with the film - via the lossless track. It often exports quite crisply with some buoyancy. This isn't an aggressive track but the effects in the film are nonetheless of great importance in establishing location and aura. There are optional English, English (SDH), French and Spanish subtitle options and my Momitsu has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked.

 

Extras :

On the feature disc we get two audio commentary options - the first with director David Fincher - and he is excellent pointing out details like the value of the first scene, his regard for the performances and other production details that only he would be privy to. The second has writer Aaron Sorkin and some of the cast. This is less formal but also revealing with Jesse Eisenberg sharing some of his feelings in regards to certain scenes. Fans of the film will want to indulge in both when they have the opportunity - I think they only promote appreciation for The Social Network. On a second, single-layered, Blu-ray disc we have the 1.5 hour, 4 part documentary How Did They Ever Make a Movie of Facebook? that covers a range of topics in the site and its relation to the film. Even those who don't use FB should find it very interesting. It's a great addition to the supplements. There are also some featurettes; an appealing 8-minutes of Fincher and Jeff Cronenweth on the 'Visuals', Angus Wall, Kirk Baxter and Ren Klyce on 'Posting' for 17-minutes, Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross and Fincher on the 'Score' for almost 20-minutes and breakdowns of the 'Ruby Skye VIP Room' sequence with multiple angles and 4 evolutionary drafts/versions of Edvard Grieg's In the Hall of the Mountain King music used in the film.

 

Blu-ray Disc 2

 

BOTTOM LINE:
The Social Network was one of the few films I saw theatrically in 2010 - and in that small category it was the best. Even of all the many films I saw this entire year (from Murnau to Unkrich) - it would rank very high. I am not always enamored with Fincher's work - admittedly though it frequently achieves entertainment status - BUT this may very well supplant Zodiac - in my considered opinion as his very best work to date. It exports information as if a fly-on-the-wall and because of that perceived non-judgmental candor - the story rises to dramatically compelling proportions. Whether factually accurate of not it 'holds' reality in an iron grip. Being a Facebook user might help enjoyment - but it's not essential - I think you just have to be a citizen in these outrageously advancing times. The speed at which life around us changes is almost... surreal. This is just another aspect of achieving the film's incredibly riveting viewing. As for the Blu-ray i
t seems without flaw in either audio or video and holds solid supplement value as well. This is very strong endorsement for both The Social Network as relevant social commentary and disc package that supplies it. This is a film you will want to see - with the Blu-ray as the definitive manner in which to see it in the comfort of your home. Very highly recommended!

Gary Tooze

December 30th, 2010

 

 

    

    

 

About the Reviewer: Hello, fellow Beavers! I have been interested in film since I viewed a Chaplin festival on PBS when I was around 9 years old. I credit DVD with expanding my horizons to fill an almost ravenous desire to seek out new film experiences. I currently own approximately 9500 DVDs and have reviewed over 3500 myself. I appreciate my discussion Listserv for furthering my film education and inspiring me to continue running DVDBeaver. Plus a healthy thanks to those who donate and use our Amazon links.

Although I never wanted to become one of those guys who focused 'too much' on image and sound quality - I find HD is swiftly pushing me in that direction.

Gary's Home Theatre:

60-Inch Class (59.58” Diagonal) 1080p Pioneer KURO Plasma Flat Panel HDTV PDP6020-FD

Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD Player
Momitsu - BDP-899 Region FREE Blu-ray player
Marantz SA8001 Super Audio CD Player
Marantz SR7002 THX Select2 Surround Receiver
Tannoy DC6-T (fronts) + Energy (centre, rear, subwoofer) speakers (5.1)

APC AV 1.5 kVA H Type Power Conditioner 120V

Gary W. Tooze

 

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