A Few Bad Apples Spoil ‘Social Network’s’ Rotten Tomatoes Score

Two critics kept David Fincher’s Facebook movie from matching the feat of “Toy Story 2” in 1999: 100 percent “fresh”

Last Updated: October 1, 2010 @ 8:44 AM

A couple of rotten tomatoes have ruined it for “The Social Network,” which came thisclose to a 100 percent “fresh” score on the movie-critic aggregation site, Rotten Tomatoes.

Its score as of Thursday night: 98 percent.

And only two lonely critics out of 98 kept David Fincher's movie about the acrimonious founding of Facebook –which opens wide on Friday — from matching the feat of 1999’s perfect-score “Toy Story 2.”

Everyone else loved the film.

Roger Ebert said it "has the rare quality of being not only as smart as its brilliant hero, but in the same way." The L.A. Times' Kenneth Turan called it "a barn-burner of a tale that unfolds at a splendid clip; IndieWire's Todd McCarthy, meanwhile, compared it to "Citizen Kane."

The two holdouts?

Praire Miller of the conservative blog NewsBlaze, who blasted Hollywood's "in your face cocky" (sic) portrayal of Harvard culture, and the New York Press' Armond White.

White, the notorious iconoclast who also recently harshed  on "The Town" (95 percent fresh overall) and "The Kids Are Alright" (96 percent) — while absolutely adoring "Resident Evil: Afterlife" (23 percent) and "Takers" (29 percent).

Most famously, he was the sole critic to take down Disney's "Toy Story 3," taking it down for being "besotted with brand names."

White's dissonant take, in fact, has made the New York writer the scourge of the fanboy world. 

"You're a joke to every single person who knows of you as a critic," wrote one commenter on his review.

So, does it matter?

While dismissing the notion that not getting a perfect 100 score hurts a movie, one studio marketing official conceded that, "I absolutely think consumers have gotten accustomed to aggregate scores. They matter."

But, said a Fox official: "I'll take a review from A.O. Scott in the New York Times any day over a consolidation score of a bunch of (mostly) meaningless reviews that are read by few."