Every film from Roger Ebert's "Great Movies" essays.
Not since the dawn of time has America experienced a man like Howard Beale!
A TV network cynically exploits a deranged ex-TV anchor's ravings and revelations about the media for their own profit.
"Don't fuck with my distribution costs!"
Much, much funnier than expected. Not only a biting satire (or 'reportage' as Lumet himself preferred, since all but one of the situations depicted had already occurred by the time of filming, according to him), but also an absurdist comedy, made more surreal by the fantastically cascading situations that the characters merely flow with, instead of trying to stop - in that way it is very Strangelove-esque (although a little less reserved in overt satire). Lumet proves again he is an actors' director, and not a single performance disappoints, with personal preference to Ned Beatty's brief, satanic cameo as the network's potential new CEO.
Thanks to the quality of performances, the fact that the…
I trust your taste here on Letterboxd so much that I'll pop in a film just because one of you recommended it to me. I have no idea how this ended up on my watchlist... it could've been a really great review or maybe someone just told me to watch it. Whatever the reason, you changed my life! THANK YOU!!! Network is an instant favorite, one that had me so riled up I needed a drink to calm me down after. (Okay, that happens a lot, but still…)
I experienced temporary amnesia brought on by cinematic brilliance right after this one, so I don't have a lot to say other than it thrilled and impressed me and I can't wait to watch it again! I bought it on blu-ray right away, so there will be many rewatches to come.
Teaser for my next review: I go in depth about how I think Paddy Chayefsky and Sidney Lumet were time travelers.
I'M AS MAD AS HELL AND....well, let's be honest, I'm probably going to keep on taking it :(
If ever I wanted to put forward a theory that Sidney Lumet was some kind of pre-programmed filmmaking genius automaton then I think Network would be the film that I would use as the centrepiece of the presentation of my evidence.
That's off the back of this, my only viewing as well. Certainly, there is plenty of other evidence that I can use but I think previously that Fail-Safe would have been the centrepiece of my evidence - even despite the fact that it is not my favourite Lumet film. That would be The Offence.
The odd thing is that I would…
Network gives me goosebumps with how perfect every aspect of it is. It is so huge in its dramatic scope you often have to laugh. The performances are perfect. Scarily perfect. Everyone. Peter Finch’s mad as hell speech is one of the definitive moments in 70s expression and it still blows me away in 2012. Of everyone though, it’s Bill Holden who secretly steals the show. He’s the wise, wrinkly, aging heart of the movie and he stunningly fits into the role like a glove. His best acting by a long shot. The whole experience is eerie, heartbreakingly honest, and astonishingly well written. I wish sometimes I could have the pleasure of sitting down for a big screen double feature in a 1976 theatre- Network and Taxi Driver. Cynical, blissful 70s film-making.
It’s hard to believe, given our current state of affairs with the evening news being a profit center for the networks (as well a prime instrument for spewing propaganda), but once upon a time the actual news was reported – not one person’s opinion or spinning the content to suit your political agenda – just the news, period.
So, take yourself back to 1976… where Walter Cronkite and Dan Rather told the news and the mighty three networks were of the mindset that they were doing a public service by reporting the news – knowing that the news division was a money loser for the corporations.
OK, so you’ve got that picture in your mind…. And along comes this very…
I can not believe it took me so long to get around to watching this. Network is a brilliant satire, as relevant today as when it was in 1976.
If you haven't seem it yet, like me you'll probably know it from the famous speech that won Peter Finch his posthumous Oscar, but the film is SO much more than that. It (obviously) tackles the politics of how ratings drive network television decisions, but also delves into the idea of how deep thoughts and ideas can be warped into something devoid of their original meaning when they're picked up as catchphrases and turned into an exploitable brand by powerful and corrupt people. It's also the story of a man trying…
Wrote at length about it last year. Only new observation, having also just seen 'Dog Day Afternoon' again, is that Sidney Lumet deserves more of the credit for this film's success than he probably gets. It's a stark contrast to 'The Hospital,' another Paddy Chayefsky script with a much weaker director who fails to make the writer's often wild and overly verbose ideas into some sort of tangible reality. But even Lumet may not do as much work here as Peter Finch, whose performance is so beautifully and unforgettably off the rails. Frankly though, I see now that this does need the romantic subplot of Holden and Dunaway cut down a little, but it's only excessive by the length of that one last scene.
- "I'm as mad as hell, and I'm not going to take this anymore!"
- A remarkable film. Obviously this has been mentioned countless times before but its foresight was remarkable. Glenn Beck could play Howard Beale quite passably.
- Peter Finch as Howard Beale, incidentally, is genius. Fox News would be hiring him were he still with us.
- The performances are all absolutely perfect. Faye Dunaway is twitchy as hell, and all the men are boorish idiots. Ned Beatty's (aka Lotso-Huggin-Bear) performance as the mysterious, charismatic CEO is a thunderstorm which shook me to the bones.
- The reality this film exists in, exists still. It hit me like a train. See quote from Ned Beatty's character in…
I'm mad as hell and I don't feel like writing reviews anymore.
Damn. Paddy Chayefsky. Faye Dunaway. Finch, Holden, Duvall Sidney Lumet. One of those I've needed to see for forever. Did not disappoint. More true today than ever.
I work in TV, and I can honestly tell you that I recognized every dirty, grotesque bastard character presented in this film.
Almost too real to enjoy, if only it wasn't so damn funny.
Network is one of the best written films ever.
This was my first time seeing Network, which I had constantly heard referenced before, and have been interested in seeing. It was definitely one of the better, and most prescient, satirical films I've ever seen. The story of Howard Beale perfectly walks that fine line between funny and sad. Finch is great, Dunaway is great, and Duval is great. William Holden also does a good job with his role, which definitely serves to ground the movie but also occasionally feels like it eats up too much screentime and unwarranted focus, especially in his final scene. Lumet's direction is subtly genius, cutting naturally from shot to shot, and scene to scene, and making the final moments of the film jarring even…
Watching it again, it's not that Paddy Chayefsky was prescient -- his problems are our problems are the same problems from 100 years ago -- it's that he told the Truth when no one else did. And he told it better than anyone else did.
One of my favorite films. Very few have seen it and I'm mad as hell about it!
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