This movie is the fictional story of computer programming genius Milo Hoffman after graduating from Stanford and getting out into the competitive world of computer software. In his contemplation of where to begin his career, he is contacted by Gary Winston whose character is loosely based on Bill Gates. Winston is the CEO of a company called NURV, and they are on the brink of completing the global communication's system, Synapse. They need Hoffman to help them meet their launch date, so after much thought and with the full support of his girlfriend Alice, he accepts the job. Tragedy soon after strikes and Milo becomes suspicious of the company he has been wrapped up in. He learns that trusting anyone could be a mistake, and that nothing is as it seems. Written by
Closing disclaimer: Stanford University has not endorsed this motion picture and no filming took place on the Stanford campus. There are a number of other entities and persons with names which may be the same or similar to those used in this motion picture. However, this motion picture is entirely fictional and (except for minor incidental references) is not intended to depict or refer to any other existing entities or persons and any such references are purely coincidental. See more »
About as unrealistic and irrelevant as "All the President's Men".
OK, make no mistake, this movie was made to convey a message. If criticised in terms of, say, similarity to "the Firm", or "yet another cyber thriller", then you really missed the point. The message is pretty blunt, and guaranteed to anger a certain large corporation. (This is not an anti-corporate movie, it is anti- a ~particular~ corporation, and if you can't guess which one, maybe you should go back to exploring the Kalahari or whatever you've been doing for the last ten years.) This corporation has been known to spend extraordinary resources on PR (including, for example, bribing journalists and college professors), so almost certainly some of the comments on this message board will be produced by that corporation and should be read in that light.
Second, while murder is a bit over the top, pretty well all the other crimes committed by the large corporation in this movie are things of which the real corporation has been seriously accused, been found to be planning, or in some cases, convicted; yet in every case managing to escape with fines or compensation payments much smaller than the profits they made from the crime. That is why we hate them so much, and why this movie was made. It's also obvious why the motif of murder was added: some of the technical details of why their actions are pure evil are difficult for a non-techie to understand, so to make the movie accessible to a wider audience, they added a more blatant crime (plus pyrotechnic special effects, a tense chase scene, love interest, etc).
Thirdly, it is not a futuristic movie, it is present day; nothing in this movie is more than about 1 or 2 years in the future, at most, and most of it is happening now or happened several years ago.
Fourthly, technical realism: while some of the tech stuff is rubbish (hey, it's a movie!), the effort put into realism is dramatically good compared to information technology in any other movie I have ever seen. When we see IP's, they are actual IPs, but martian (I guess they don't want geeks going home and whois-ing them!), the code is all real code: some HTML, some C++, real scripting, but mostly VB (a language the certain large corporation is known to use a lot). The algorithms they discuss improving are even algorithms the product would really require! Not only that, the product is frighteningly similar to the large corporation's actual current development path!
So, if you walked away from this movie thinking "just for geeks" or "totally unrealistic", you need to give yourself a good hard slap, wake up and see what is really going on in the world around you. This movie was about as unrealistic and irrelevant as "All the President's Men".
Oh, by the way, I better say that all the above comments are only my personal opinions, in case they try to sue me, because they do do stuff like that.
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