Critic Reviews



Based on 16 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
So the movie's flawed. So it leaves us with loose ends and questions. That finally doesn't bother me, because what it does accomplish is done so well, is seen so sharply, is presented so unforgivingly, that Network will outlive a lot of tidier movies.
Sidney Lumet’s direction is outstanding.
Network is typical of the cool intelligence of '70s American cinema.
The Hollywood Reporter
Whatever its flaws, Network is a picture that can stand on its own. And does.
Network can be faulted both for going too far and not far enough, but it's also something that very few commercial films are these days. It's alive. This, I suspect, is the Lumet drive. It's also the wit of performers like Mr. Finch, Mr. Holden, and Miss Dunaway.
It's a dark, dark comedy that ruthlessly skewers the news industry on a stake, then roasts it alive.
There's an amazing display of acting talent, even though director Lumet doesn't quite tie all the strands together.
The film is immaculately cast...The principal figures in its ideological debate – the chilly, number-crunching executive Robert Duvall, godlike network supremo Ned Beatty and the ambitious, exploitative programmer Faye Dunaway – are vivid caricatures. But the movie runs out of steam as satiric invention turns into fervent, deeply sincere statement, and solid William Holden’s middle-aged producer becomes the representative of old-fashioned integrity.
There is a lunatic energy about it. Every once in a while, Chayefsky abandons the struggle to dramatize his ideas and has somebody, usually Holden, just turn to the camera and spout off. In those moments, his concern — and sometimes his mother wit — comes blazing through and the picture takes on a life not found in safe, sane, well-calculated movies.
The New Yorker
He hardly bothers with the characters; the movie is a ventriloquial harrangue. He thrashes around in messianic God-love booziness, driving each scene to an emotional peak.

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