Friday, May 28, 2010

Best Actress 1976: Faye Dunaway in Network




Faye Dunaway received her third Oscar nomination and won for playing Diana Christionson in Network. Diana is an intelligent, yet ruthless woman who would do anything to get ratings up and is power hungry. When she discovers that Howard Beale (Peter Finch) is having an emotional breakdown and going into mad rantings on air, she immediately sees an opportunity to make a huge hit out of Howard's new "insights" into the world and this causes terrible consequences ahead. I couldn't imagine anyone else but Faye Dunaway playing Diana and Faye plays it perfectly. She make's Diana's monolgues about television incredibly mesmerizing and it's like she's grabbed us by the throat and never lets go. Faye brings Diana thrillingly to life without going over the top , and makes her a fascinating character. She never lets Diana become one-note or a stereotype, which any other actress could have done. She and William Holden work superbly together, making their relationship believable and interesting. When he breaks up with her, Faye shows that Diana does know, deep down, what she is and that she is completely immersed in the world of television , so much so that it has become her whole life. Faye Dunaway gives a fabulous performance that adds a lot of depth to both her character and the film, which gets

12 comments:

Fritz said...

Great review. I wouldn't give her 5 points but she was certainly excellent!

Sage Slowdive said...

Yes! Those monologues were extremely hard to do, she has said, and look how natural everything looks. I love it :)

Louis Morgan said...

You pointed out exactly what works about this performance. What did you think of all the other nominees?

Malcolm said...

Her monologues were so masterfully and naturally delivered, considering how complicated the script was.

I tried to do her monologues but it's pure craziness. Only FAY could get Diana.

My pick, since I have only seen har and Talia, but I can see why the Academy delayed her Oscar win - she deserves to win this!

joe burns said...

Fritz: Thanks! I hope she gets 4, 5/5 at least if you do this year.

Sage: Yes, she was totally believable. We'll see if she's my pick.

Louis: You mean, the other nominated performances in the film? I thought Straight was great, Betty okay, Finch terrific, and William Holden fantastic. I actually liked Holden better then Finch.

Malcom: I certainly agree,. As I said, nobody could have played this role except for Faye.

Louis Morgan said...

Yes that is what I meant, Did you think Duvall deserved to be nominated more than Beatty?

joe burns said...

I got Duvall and Betty mixed up. I think Beatty was fine, but nothing that great. Same with Duvall, although he was probably more worthy of a nomination. What did you think of Straight? And is it possible for you to do Best Actor 76?

Louis Morgan said...

I thought Straight was great, and I am fully able to do Best Actor 1976.

Twister said...

I might be the one person in the film blogosphere to not love Dunaway's work here. Shrill, flat, and uninteresting. I didn't see any of the depth you described, and Dunaway (nor the script) really let us see inside this personification of cruelty. She stays on the surface, and never taps into anything deeper. Beatrice only has one scene yet she conveys an entire lifetime of depth and piercing integrity.

joe burns said...

Well, to each his own!

Alex in Movieland said...

I dislike this performance so much it hurts :) and moreso the win. Liv and Sissy were robbed.

joe burns said...

We'll see how the ranking goes.