The ills of the corporatisation of not only broadcast news, but the world at large in this scabrous attack on commutable integrity, exploitation and contempt. It's ugly stuff but brilliantly played with crackle and fizz and staged by a Director who knew how to read a script. Perhaps the closet Hollywood has yet come to opera, albeit ranted from a soapbox. Sad to say it's not prescient, just nothing changes.
some self-aware, timeless moments but overall a didactic and grossly inaccurate portrayal of the formulaic and conservative world that is news programming. strong start is compromised by degenerative, escapist subplots and outbursts of terrible overacting. ending could not have been lazier.
This is what a masterpiece looks, sounds, and feels like. Network speaks more today than it did in 1976 and is even funnier given our political reality. Working off Paddy Chayefsky's incredible script, utilizing some of the greatest actors of all time, and in the hands of Sidney Lument, Network is a slam dunk. The satire works so well because the film is so grounded - there is no score, just bleak human reality.
The hilarity of Howard Beale's mental breakdown to hearing the voice of God and then switching to hearing the voice of a CCA Chairman of television to preach to the masses is so out there that they actually pulled it off with well deserved Oscar acting that cemented this play of corporate popularity and madness to work. Though the radical terrorist is just there for a plot device it still finds a way to fit in.
Network reveals the bizzare world behind the media, desperate to conform and please. After 40 years, this issue is still very current and relevant, with everyone being able to communicate via internet and having the same unexplicable need to be seen and loved by as many as possible.
Both straightforward and metaphorical. Judgmental and nihilistic. Far-reaching and direct. Comical and dead serious. Whether you bought it or not, finding it a profoundly prophetic case for Debord's "spectacle society" or just an over-explaining exaggeration spoiled by occasional acting mannerism, its marvelous writing presents the thesis so convincingly it's bound to provoke an argument.