100 Word Review – Network (1976)

“I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take this anymore!”

When an ageing news anchor (Peter Finch) announces his suicide live on air, TV execs (Faye Dunaway, William Holden, Robert Duvall) look to exploit the spike in ratings.

Directed by Sidney Lumet (12 Angry Men, Dog Day Afternoon), this film won 4 Oscars including both Best Actor and Best Actress, and was nominated for a further 6.

Dark, cynical and provocative, it is a magnificent example of the power of filmmaking, successfully hitting a little too close to home no matter what decade you’re watching it in. Currently #181 on IMDb’s Top 250.

100 Word Review – 12 Angry Men (1957)

Henry Fonda stars in this moving legal drama. 

Based almost entirely in one room, it follows the decision making process of a jury in a murder case and how minds can be changed by one man asking all the right questions.

Directed by Sidney Lumet (Network, Dog Day Afternoon), it was shot with ever increasing focal lengths so that the backdrops appear closer to the actors as the film intensifies, filling an audience with a growing sense of claustrophobia.

Despite the low budget, and losing out on all three Oscar nominations, it currently sits at number 5 on IMDb’s Top 250 films.