Network (1976) - Drama

Hohum Score



A television network cynically exploits a deranged former anchor's ravings and revelations about the news media for its own profit.

IMDB: 8.1
Director: Sidney Lumet
Stars: Faye Dunaway, William Holden
Length: 121 Minutes
PG Rating: R
Reviews: 41 out of 374 found boring (10.96%)

One-line Reviews (177)

Sorry to sound unsympathetic but we all have our favourite compelling moments of real news stories .

Duvall's executive, Beatrice Straight's betrayed wife and Ned Beatty's god like big shot makes this one of the most frightening, entertaining, funniest, remarkable film from the 70's.

It's darkly funny (as in pitch-black), enormously cynical, and riveting.

It's a magnificent film with strong acting, excellent writing, intense dialogue, and great cinematography.

The film is quite long and it does tend to drag in places here and there.

Unfortunately for me, I changed in the mid '90s, politically and spiritually and this film now is unwatchable.

Plus "Network" showcased that news could become entertaining and it could mock society much like we see today on shows like "Real Time with Bill Maher" and "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart".

"Bulworth" was a compelling movie in that it depicted a public figure who felt he had nothing to lose and so he felt free to expose the hypocrisy and incestuous nature of the relationship between the media and politicians.

The whole seemed pointless.

(Strangely, the sparse voice-overs contradict the crackling intelligence of these TV-land players with dry, monotone authority.

My conjecture is that his infatuation is really with television itself as the compelling medium it is.

He perfectly captures that sense of earnest futility and confusion into which Max's life has descended, and the stoic acquiescence with which he resolves it.

A gripping classic not to be missed .

If you keep that in mind, you'll still find a wonderfully entertaining movie, one that still makes you think and will stick with you for a long time after you see it.

The Empty Tube .

It's well worth watching to see Peter Finch deliver a bombastic turn at the very end of his career, and his famous rants and speeches are undoubtedly the best thing here.

' Whereas the latter is an absorbing dissection of the go-getters behind the written media, Lumet's film would probably feel more at home alongside 'Dr.

William Holden is alternatively funny and sad as an news exec, and he makes a powerful central figure, even though the ostensible lead role is the more outrageous and really compelling newsanchor played by Peter Finch.

All of life is reduced to the common rubble of banality.

These complaints include: -the movie is too "slow" -Chayefsky's monologues are unrealistic -the film is irrelevant today -you can't relate to such a movieWell, in this comment, I would like to dispute such complaints.

Later they speak pointedly of this mutual attraction, and the sunlight hits Dunaway's face and bathes her in the most stunning way and she creases up in a smile, before we cut back to the dull grey office, where she is busy in her world and her mind is the furthest from romance.

Network is an amazing film, and a very entertaining one at that.

Network an astute, entertaining romp that has a lot to say and put on a show with.

Dunaway is absolutely stunning as the insane Diana, as well as William Holden's Max.

A slow burner .

Ned Beatty's description of the corporate universe is more compelling than anything any fire-breathing preacher could ever concoct.

It also becomes a bit of a dramatic mess in the second half, most notably in a painfully tedious four-minute marriage-breakup scene that inexplicably stole the Oscar from Jodie Foster (in Taxi).

It can be fascinating to see how much has changed since the time it was made, and how much has stayed relevant.

The scenes between Holden and Dunaway exploring the nuances of their relationship show a very damaged woman, a fascinating view into the future of people obsessed with social media and unable to see reality past the push of their finger from their electronic devices.

But these are minor distractions, really, from an otherwise-stunning film.

I gave this film a 6 out of 10 because of those reasons mostly, and also because a lot of the acting was also stale and boring, with the best actors being Faye Dunaway and Peter Finch.

It doesn't go deep in that direction, but still it is very compelling story.

I will say that the film is prescient in only one way: Ned Beatty, who appears for one scene, has the most intriguing part, where he says, among other things: "It is the international system of currency which determines the vitality of life on this planet.

They send Beale out again to clarify, but instead he gives a stunning editorial rant, and the ratings go even higher.

The film is completely a work of storytelling and, at least for the writer, stunning clarity of message and purpose.

Not a very radical movie, but very creative and exciting.

It was well shot and fast paced.

Beale is a has-been news anchor at UBS (a low-rated, boring network on the verge of financial collapse).

Apart from being engrossingly valid and entertaining films it is hard to draw a thread between 12 Angry Men, Serpico, Equus, Network, Dog Day Afternoon and House of Games.

Dunaway is ambitious and perfect in every definition of the word; Finch is stunning as a psychotic broadcaster turned prophet; Holden depicts class and depth as a network executive; and other players, including Robert Duvall (new network executive) and Beatrice Straight (as Holden's wife who struggles to maintain her dignity after learning of her husband's infidelities) prove what great supporting roles can do.

I think the title of Neil Postman's book on the subject is, "Entertaining Ourselves to Death.

People's humiliation became so banal, we're the instruments of that.

But the screenplay alone is what makes this film incredibly enjoyable!

He lends intriguing insight into his screenplay, his perspective on television and what he feels the movie is all about, even though Shore and guest Steve Lawrence are intrusively banal with their interjectory comments (Shore's other guest Anne Bancroft has the good sense to keep her mouth shut when Chayefsky talks).

There is a lot to digest with this movie, but some sections seem to contrived, and under developed.

It blew me away years ago, but I find it even more stunning now.

While the temptation is there to compare her performance to her notorious role of Joan Crawford in "Mommie Dearest", the subtle nuances Dunaway utilizes here makes her fascinating to watch.

"Soon after, it seems the entire Nation is emitting that same intense-cry of maddening frustration (the irony of course being that no one really knows precisely what they are so angry about - or how to rectify this intensely-percolating-rage) = just the demonstrative 'act' / volatile-expression of anger-outrage itself becomes akin to psychic-liberation for their beleaguered collective-spirits and the proverbial 'genie' has been let out of its bottle, can it ever be put back safely?

Engaging 2 hour plus, entertainment.

Yet it's only helped by the intense rants of anger and truth telling from Beale ("Who's Mad as Hell, and he's not gonna take it anymore!

Sure, pursue criminals who commit crime, but the slow erosion of the freedoms of the internet because of copyright infringement, online bullying and so on shows that the people in charge don't know what the internet is about.

The movie was written by Paddy Chayevsky, a vulgar anti-populist hack, who previously in "Marty" created what is remembered by many Golden Age fans, including the editors of Mad Magazine, as the most boring movie ever made by Hollywood.

We are constantly being sucked in by its beautiful lure just as Max was seduced by Diana, and also like Max, we will soon realize that the glitz and glam is only a coating to television's cold and empty core.

Chayefsky had skewered doctors in "The Hospital," but the molten scorn he poured onto the television industry in "Network" is an intense, invective-laden experience not to be missed.

Many scenes were monotone.

Network is a great film, both entertaining and thought provoking.

The Worst Movie Ever .

Well, it's the year 2003 now and with the highly formulaic and flavor-of-the-week TV trends like "reality" shows, "Network" rings true.

The only distraction of the movie is when Dunaway and Holden get into an extra-marital affair (boring).

However, the strong beginning and end of this story are bogged down by a slow and repetitive second act.

I saw it a number of times back then and found it fascinating.

" tirade is riveting.

But if you understand the concept behind the movie, it can be enjoyable.

This fascinating satire of the inner workings of a t.

While the segments of Howard Beal's rantings are riveting, the film slows as we are forced to endure the mid-life crisis of Holden's character and his involvement with the thoroughly revolting character played by Dunaway.

I endorse the later of the two because I believe things have changed since 1974 - I wasn't born yet, but I know because of my parents, the movies, literature, etc, etc, etc. Peter Finch as the mad prophet of the airwaves gives Chayefsky a riveting and powerful voice.

Faye Dunaway is stunning in a role she was born to play.

There are several much better things to watch about this subject: Black Mirror's episodes 'The Waldo Moment' (Wich is one of the worst for me) and Fifteen Millions Merits, Nightcrawler (With Jake Gyllenhaal being more crazy than Faye Dunaway's character), etc. Finally, the movie is way too long.

Before Network the only other film I have seen from him is 12 Angry Men, a very entertaining film.

Their scenes together go on forever, and Holden's character carries the trite and obvious metaphor of Dunnaway as television personified, and their relationship as soap opera far further than necessary.

Many very unsophisticated people gather ALL of their "information" (mostly propaganda) from the television.

Okay, so satire is meant to exaggerate and distort but for me, the film falls off the rails into banality, the more so as it seeks at other points to be so contemporary and relevant that it overloads the screen with references to real-life media people, TV programmes of the day and even background news events.

She claims to be inept at everything except her work, she is engrossed in the falseness of the media which influences her own life in which she compares affairs with Vronsky and Anna in 'Anna Karenina' and sees mundane situations as a script.

Completely intriguing .

Peter Finch is riveting as Beale.

By turns an intense drama and a grotesque comedy, Network is the story of a failing news program exploiting the sudden popularity of an anchor in the middle of a nervous breakdown.

Intense and Cynical.

The acting was superb by all of the cast(even though I did note the abnormal shouting matches throughout the movie, ha), it was riveting to see a network and its reporters go mad with ratings and lose their humanity in order to be the #1 show on television, even if it meant killing off one of their own.

Characters are very stale and predictable.

This is one of the most cynical films of all time, with a very dark and sometimes humorous look at the banality of television and the stupidity of the public.

It was not one of the film I liked the most, simply because it was very slow and it didn't touch me that much emotionally, except for the end.

Peter Finch is also stunning in this movie and defiantly must say that this is Robert Duvall's best performance.

TV has always been the slowest, fattest, most easily-gored bull in the cultural corrada, and the idea that NETWORK is a work of prophetic genius because it foresees our Jerry Springer-dominated present is crazy, especially when you consider Newton Minow's famous definition of the boob-tube as a 'vast cultural wasteland' was already old news when he coined the term in the early 60s.

Strange that why Howard was so lame, and has been influence, and he starting propaganda of business world, which he against, actually.

The television network including the news, has become a circus, a dog fight in search for higher TRPs, leading to propaganda and "bastardization" of what was essentially the means to enlightening the public with the "truth".

It confronts the banality of television with the articulation of better cinema.

It is also quite boring and not gripping at many points in the film, which suggests it isn't exactly filled with inspiration.

It is a compelling, brilliantly written, beautifully acted movie and more.

If you haven't seen this movie, it's extremely entertaining, meaningful, and may have a profound effect on how you view your world.

Engrossing satire from Paddy Chayefsky and Sidney Lumet about sensationalism and the almighty dollar in television.

The plot is slightly strange and can be boring at times.

And, in turn, this sort of crap programming results in even more controversial and pointless shows--such as one that glorifies terrorists and encourages these killers to film their exploits so they can be shown on TV!

Great Overall Movie Very Entertaining .

This gives the film as a whole more heft; since he is so convincing, you see how useful he is to the networks, and become more immersed in the tragedy of all that is happening.

#1 Best Film of 1976'Network' is Paddy Chafesky's riveting and grim tale of the sleaze surrounding the American television industry.

"Network" is important, compelling, groundbreaking, and as unforgettable as Finch's battle cry.

This seemed a needless distraction, perhaps inserted to keep Holden's character throughout the film and to pad it's length-- otherwise, there seems little need to waste so much time jumping from commentary on the media to character drama.

Unlike films today, it portrays the message in such an uninteresting way with everything being said through dialogue and not told visually.

President Nixon had been forced to resign in disgrace over Watergate, and his replacement Gerald Ford seemed a dull, uninspiring figure.

If you don't agree with me, please read some of his powerful words, including many fascinating monologues by several different characters, in the "quotes" section of this very resourceful IMDb website.

It's gripping, disturbing, intriguing, well-structured, supremely acted, directed with ease & fantastically photographed.

When people watch Jerry Springer, Sally or any other talk show on TV, they want action, laughter, swearwords (even if they are disguised by a beep), amusement etc. TV viewers do not want to see or hear the truth, they want to feast their eyes on amusing and riveting stories.

and Riveting.

5/10 Sidney Lumet later went on to make one of the best movies ever -- Running on Empty.

It debunked the old traditional boring television of our great grand parents, that television that was speaking all the time in order to bring us the truth, to teach us the true truth, to make us believe every word they said was absolutely inspiring and we had to be thankful and grateful for this new medium to be so effective in teaching us, in lifting us out of our ignorance.

Pretentious .

While full of philosophical and controversial candor that carries an otherwise dull plot, Network, 66th of AFI's greatest hundred is greatly lacking.

Howard in a state of intense and uncontrollable anger and indignation whips up millions of TV viewers all over the country about the state of the news and how helpless he as well as they are in effecting or changing it.

Both each have essentially one scene, but both do quite memorable things with them, and Beatty's in particular is one of the most grotesquely fascinating cameos ever captured on film.

It's a boredom killer.

Consider also the in-movie crowd's response to Beale's angry rants -- applause, treating it as just entertaining theatrics and not really heeding the meaning, just as we the real audience are doing.

All of life is reduced to the common rubble of banality.

Well worth watching.

This film was very uninteresting for me.

Television:The Ultimate Boredom Killer .

People believed the antic as if it were true, absolutely true because it was live and unexpected, hence true since un-programmed.

It is still very enjoyable for the majority of that time, and you end up feeling very sorry for Howard Beale, especially when he is brought down all for the sake of the ratings.

It is immensely entertaining and easily one of the best black comedies I've seen in a long time.

Alternately brilliant and Dull .

Network is a very intense movie.

But, from the moment she appears she has prepared a compelling rendering of a woman who has put up with an insufferable man to whom to be married for so many years that, even if she feels enraged and deluded, she has already been disillusioned to the idea that he could do what he has done.

To say that the pacing of the movie is slow is an understatement.

However, in this satire about the pros, cons, and "con-artists" of tv there are still things, despite a long and, eventually, tedious journey for them, which you don't want to miss such as Peter Finch's various speeches (especially the "television is controlling your lives" rant) and the unforgettable line "I'm mad as hell, and I'm not going to take it anymore!

A masterpiece worth watching .

Excellent film that's provocative and intense.

The story is so smart and intriguing, it is impossible to get bored in any second of the film.

He also has a sharp ear for multilayerd sound editing which is something he shares in common with another director associated with New Hollywood namely Robert Altman All in all NETWORK is by no means a bad film just one that hasn't dated well in relation to the work of the " movie brats " of that era TAXI DRIVER , JAWS and APOCALYPSE NOW were absolute landmark movies and still remain compelling movies within their own right .

In particular William Holden's wrenching performance as the burned-out but still sensitive Max is drop-jaw stunning.

 Still, this movie is worth watching for a variety of reasons, including great performances by Peter Finch and Faye Dunaway, some excellent writing, and its commentary on television that's more relevant today than ever.

While not the best movie of 1976, it is worth the watch.

William Holden is as boring in 1976 as he was in 1955, and his cliché relationship with Faye Dunnaway is not at all believable, and not even that interesting.

By William Holden's 5th monologue I was falling asleep.

'Network' is probably the best satire on television ever made, both engrossing and sharply written by Paddy Chayefsky.

Compelling, intelligent, passionate, and funny if you have any perspective at all on the era.

It's about the power of media, the new world order, future of governments and the "one vast and ecumenical holding company, for whom all men will work to serve a common profit, in which all men will hold a share of stock, all necessities provided, all anxieties tranquilized, all boredom amused.

Then all we're left with is a wonderfully-acted, well-written and entertaining film!

So, sorry, bored to death and wishing it was over.

It's fun and enjoyable and is considered of the greatest work done by the collaboration of Lumet and Paddy Chayefsky which didn't last any further than this picture.

As far as the story went, there was no reason for him to even be around except to give a long, drawn-out speech every once and a while.

The bland and kind of slow direction emphasizes the dullness of the movie.

It just becomes tiresome after a while, and the plot just becomes too silly, even for a satire.

There is a point in the movie where the entire story comes predictable and the main plot gets lost in the way-too-much satiric situations.

Poorly written and pretentious.

What first becomes a PR nightmare for Beale's station, UBS, evolves into a godsend when Beale goes on the air to apologize but delivers an impassioned speech rousing Americans out of their funk with his war cry: "I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take this anymore!

It's an entertaining, albeit caustic, film with a moral, from which no one with a conscience is exempt.

It's so gripping, so desperate, so selfish, so interesting, that it leaves you in awe.

Produced by Laurent Bouzereau, who did similar duties on the recently released DVD of David Lean's "Ryan's Daughter", it is chockfull of interesting information about the production and a fascinating historical perspective by Cronkite himself.

It's a reflection of a nation that is so full of itself that it has become bored with the mundane and the pleasurable.

Exciting, outlandish, and frighteningly relevant.

And of course the film has now gained a new raft of fans because this banal grumble about TV was supposedly "ahead of its time", except that TV never has been and never will be quite that way, because audiences – human beings – are not as stupid as Chayefsky thinks they are.

Jensen's stunning, five-minute disquisition on international corporatism was similarly rooted in accurate and current reality.

NetworkPaddy Chayefsky; the writer, is the real protagonist in here, for his keen vision on creating a fiction in a white-collar office and still keeping it real and resembling towards the practicality is what helps the stunning craft sail off to the shore, safely.

Which brings us onto Peter Finch, who again is pure ham, but of the classic Charles Laughton variety, putting every ounce of strength he has into a compelling act.

I recommend especially anyone under the age of thirty-five to watch this film, and they will see just how predictable the current lowest common denominator state of affairs, domestically and abroad, in the media and in day to day affairs, was, even decades in coming.

The characters were monotone, even if the movie was more story driven than character driven.

The end of the movie is also very shocking and unexpected.

Unpredictable and surprising!

Paddy Chayefsky, who wrote the screenplay, stages the film's action as a series of monologues and speeches, and the overall result can be a bit tedious, like a film version of an essay.

This movie is one of those '70s masterpieces that demands several viewings--for the story (multi-layered, engrossing and sometimes hilarious), the acting (how many actresses have won an Oscar for ten minutes of screen time, like Beatrice Straight?

The film also stars Beatrice Straight as Schumacher's boring wife, Conchetta Ferrell was an assistant working for the network and Ned Beatty who plays the sinister boss of the UBS television network who always gets what he wants.

The film features a variety of other stunning performances, two of which rightfully received Oscars, as a variety of excellently painted characters.

It starts off with the great premise of fading TV anchorman Howard Beale's on-air suicide wish, but somehow for me didn't follow through as it could have done so that when Beale (Peter Finch) does meet his demise at the conclusion, it's done in a contrived and ludicrous way at odds with the early promise of realism and consistency.

Could a movie like this woo modern crowds who labor under the belief that by simply being enjoyable a movie is worthy?

Another excellent bit performance is that of Ned Beatty, whose glorious hamming is the complete opposite of Straight's straightness, but nevertheless provides one of the most entertaining scenes of the whole picture.

Our television programs rival between propaganda and gratuitous debauchery.

The film was also compelling and well made and I liked the message and what the film had to say.

A company in which all men will hold a share of stock, all necessities provided, all anxieties tranquilised, all boredom amused.

This movie is worth watching.

In the empty and hypocrite world showed in Network, the madman is not only a hero who tells the truth and sees far beyond the usual ability to look.

This performer's dichotomous isolation establishes a necessary bluntness for their character, thus making it easier for that character to be effectively entertaining!

Some story lines seem completely pointless though like the love story between Max and Diana that doesn't seem to fit with the rest of the plot.

This is an extraordinary and thrilling movie.

The reason for this is because it has a clear message and something to say about society, but it is in many ways a movie because it is quite formulaic like a traditional Hollywood product film.

It's a brilliant, incisive script, and it's a movie well worth watching.

I rented it, and even though the scene did not come until exactly an hour into the film, I found myself immersed in all other characters and situations.

They did not suck in the audience to the scene, but rather forced the audience to listen to the uninteresting dialogue in this film.

Unfortunately the dialogue provided is so silly and uninspiring that we wonder how this could ever have ben taken seriously.