7. Network. Talk about an amazing script. written by Paddy Chayefsky and directed by Sidney Lumet. This is a film I discovered long after its original release in 1976. I was familiar with it’s title, but knew little about its content. I assumed (wrongly) that it was just some uninteresting cheesy vintage movie about an American TV channel and I gave it no heed. But this movie is so much more.
The story follows a failing TV network channel and its lead news anchor man, Howard Beale, played by Peter Finch who is ready for retirement. During a live show he goes into a personal rant about the injustices of the world (“I’m as mad as hell, and I’m not going to take this anymore!”) which has unexpected and far reaching consequences as the plot unfolds.
This is a delicious and alarmingly prescient satire on the roll of media in our lives and the fundamental nature of modern life in this technological ‘democratic’ era. A must see for it’s calculated absurdity and brilliant character study of various flavours of dominant personality types. A superb cast with stand out performances from Faye Dunaway and William Holden. And includes probably the best monologue put down of any movie I’ve seen. “I’m your last contact with human reality, I love you. And that painful decaying love is the only thing between you and the shrieking nothingness you’ve lived the rest of the day…”. Brutal honesty, fantastic.
6. Blade Runner 2049. Just when you thought that the age of decent sequels was over, 35 years later we get the treat Blade Runner fans had long been waiting for.
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