“You have meddled with the primal forces of nature Mr. Beale …”
Network is a 1976 American satirical film written by Paddy Chayefsky and directed by Sidney Lumet, about a fictional television network, UBS, and its struggle with poor ratings.
In this scene, CCA chairman Arthur Jensen (Ned Beatty, with an incredible performance), explains his own “corporate cosmology” to Howard Beale (Peter Finch). Jensen delivers a tirade of his own in an “appropriate setting”, the dramatically darkened CCA boardroom, that suggests to the docile Beale that Jensen may himself be some higher power – describing the interrelatedness of the participants in the international economy and the illusory nature of nationality distinctions. Jensen persuades Beale to abandon the populist messages and preach his new “evangel”.
The film ends with the narrator stating:
“This was the story of Howard Beale, the first known instance of a man who was killed because he had lousy ratings.”
It’s a reflexion of globalisation and a very accurate picture of present days.
You can watch the full movie here.