Can a mockumentary be made about a subject that is already something of a joke? The genre has always poked fun at what some would consider easy targets. But the comedy is based on how serious the subject is treated in real life. The Social Ones is a mockumentary that follows the five most important social media influencers today. The National Influencer is a publication dedicated to following modern day celebrities – those who have the most followers. They are about to celebrate their fifth anniversary with the help of the biggest influencers around.
The film boasts some strong performances. In particular, Stephanie March is great as the psychiatrist who only sees influencers. Sisters Lauren and Danielle Kossan shine as the two editor chiefs for the magazine. Amanda Giobbi is amazing as Josie Z. Desi Domo steals every scene she is in. The Social Ones is filled with top notch acting from top to bottom.
The Social Ones is incredibly funny. The cold open is hilarious and there is lots of deadpan humor. Social media is filled with opportunities for laughs and the mockumentary makes sure to take its shots. That is also to the film’s detriment. Much like social media itself, things quickly start to get repetitive. There are only so many jokes to make about influencers. The jokes never stop being funny, they just get old. Again, just like social media.
The Social Ones revisits themes visited by Christopher Guest. The plot mocks the self importance of celebrity and those who enable them. The issue is movies like Best in Show deal in subjects that are taken seriously. Everyone may use social media, but few consider influencers genuinely meaningful. The end result is the movie is making a joke of something that is not taken seriously to begin with. This may be why some of the best jokes later in the movie do not work. The Social Ones is like a buzzard picking at the funny bones.
The audience will never give up on the movie, however. The funny script and great acting are too good to turn away from. Things may get a little familiar at times, but that also adds to the film’s charm. A straight up comedy may have been better, but The Social Ones has some strong laughs.