NETWORK  1976   (121 minutes)    D:  SIDNEY LUMET    W:  PADDY CHAYEFSKY   AUGUST 30th to September 4th   7:00 and 9:15pm, also Saturday and Sunday at 4:30pm                                                            Nominated for 10 Oscars, it won 4, 1 for Best Screenplay.  (HELL YES!)

There ar so many reasons why you should see NETWORK, it’s impossible the list them all.  Social commentary, that famous phrase, Oscar-winning performances, and the fact it’s one of the best damn written films EVER!  So I’ll tell you some unique reasons why it’s important to see.  The clothes.  Yes, you heard me right.  There are films that changed the course of fashion history, and this is one of them.  Glamour magazine devoted an entire page to “THAT white blouse” Miss Dunaway wore in the film, calling it the “must have” item of the year.  Plus profiling the rest of her wardrobe as what the well-dressed woman should be wearing.  I myself was blown away by the clothes, being partial to the sleek menswear influence reflected in their style.  And they totally reflected her character (just think of the famous words she utters after having sex with William Holden for the first time!)   In fact Miss Dunaway has been a fashion icon that inspired many of the fashion-changing films over the years, Bonnie and Clyde and Chinatown to name but a few.  Often overlooked/under considered, what characters wear in film tell us a great deal about their character’s identity and motivations.  (I have a half-hour lecture I give to my film classes about how the colors and accessories Edith Head has the characters wear in VERTIGO (& NO i don’t mean the Carlotta necklace!) tell you the outcome of the film long before it ends.)  So watch it for the clothes–ask yourself–what is the color palate?  Why was it chosen?  How does it fit in with the Production Desgn?  How well do the clothes coordinate with the makeup & hairstyles and how do they also reflect the character?  How does their total appearance fit in with the plot and time period the film is set in?  It’s one of my favorite things to do when watching ANY film, and to my mind really enriches the viewing experience.  Watching the fashion changing clothes is yet another reason to see this masterpiece!


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