A CIA agent returns from lunch to discover his entire office staff murdered, and must go into hiding to avoid his own murder by agents within the agency. — Genre: Feature Film-Drama — Rating: R — Release Date: 28-MAR-2006 — Me... more »dia Type: DVD« less
Don K. from BEAVERTON, OR Reviewed on 1/28/2011...
One of my all time favorites. A real classic, that somehow manages to avoid being less of a movie just because it's dated. Top notch screenplay, casting, acting and direction. This movie has it all. Suspenseful and clever plot. A must see.
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Superb Spy Thriller; Best Of Genre!
Barron Laycock | Temple, New Hampshire United States | 05/20/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I first saw this suspense/spy thriller when it was first released in the theaters sometime in the late 1970s, while living in London and working for the American government. There's nothing that compares with the paranoia associated with seeing a taut spy thriller, only to exit the theater into a cold, foggy late evening in downtown London. The picture it paints of a murderous renegade network operating within the Central Intelligence Agency is both frightening and plausible, and is delivered by Robert Redford and his production team in a tight, well-developed tale with a convincing thread of interconnecting events that spins way out of control as the protagonist tries desperately to figure out who is at the center of the plot and why he and his cohorts at a special studies institute sponsored by the Agency are targets. For me, this movie is a nonstop roller-coaster ride, with Redford trying in vain to jump off the damn thing before it crashes below! The level of paranoia as well as the multiple levels of deceit and deception depicted in the film seemed a bit outlandish at the time, but given the temper of the times, it somehow seemed much more plausible in the backwash of Watergate and all that was revealed about the machinations of the so-called "invisible government" then. The hero's ability to parse together the facts and learn and adapt as he progresses makes the movie work especially well, and one can relate to his growing frustration as he realizes there just may not be any way out alive. And between the margins of the scenes lie some intriguing questions regarding the role of secrecy in an open and supposedly democratic society that add a measure of intellectual acumen and "gravitas" to the tale.So popular was this movie at the box office that it spawned a number of other spy thrillers in its wake. The film's cast included not only Redford as the hero, but also starred Fay Dunaway, and Cliff Robertson. This movie makes for an absorbing evening of entertainment, and a surefire way to escape the humdrum of everyday life with a stunning tale of murder, mayhem, and betrayal. I highly recommend this flick. Enjoy!"
Why? More to the point, why me?
Robert Morris | Dallas, Texas | 09/11/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Since September 11th two years ago, most of us are probably more willing to believe that there can be evil (albeit unseen) forces active within our society which can suddenly result in death and destruction. What sets this film apart from most others in its genre is the introduction of a guileless central character (Joe Turner played by Robert Redford) who seems to pose no threat to anyone and yet he becomes involved in a deadly situation which neither he nor we understand. Director Sydney Pollack was perhaps influenced by Alfred Hitchcock who, in so many of his own films, subjects an innocent person to undefined but nonetheless nerve-chilling terror. After obtaining take-out lunches for himself and his associates, Turner returns to their small office in Manhattan and finds all of them dead. What happened? Who did it? Why? The situation is complicated by the fact that he and they are employed by the C.I.A. There is no indication that their research has any special significance. Security precautions for their office seem perfunctory. Turner flees the scene, later meeting with his supervisor Higgins (Cliff Robertson). After someone attempts to kill Turner, he again calls Higgins who urges him to "come in." By now, Turner correctly senses that he is in great danger but from whom? Why? What to do? He also realizes that he can no longer trust anyone, including Higgins. Still in flight, he (his code name "Condor") enlists the reluctant assistance of a stranger named Kathy (Faye Dunaway) who becomes his only ally. Enough about the plot.Based on James Grady's novel Six Days of the Condor, this is one of several films from the 1970s which portray distrust of institutional authority because of various assassinations, the Viet Nam War, and Watergate. However, it is important to keep in mind that Joe Turner is not a major political or religious leader; rather, he is a relatively insignificant research analyst in a relatively insignificant C.I.A. field office. For me, the key point is that literally anyone anywhere can be selected for elimination at any time. Worse yet, we won't know who's involved, much less why. Redford delivers a solid performance as Turner, the focal point throughout the film. As for Dunaway, she does what she can with Kathy, not much of a part. Of special note is the work of Max von Sydow (as Joubert) and John Houseman (as Wabash). Theirs is a cold-blooded professionalism which views people merely as "assets" to accumulate or liquidate per orders from unidentified authorities. This is not the best of the political thrillers but it does portray some thought-provoking situations which still seem relevant 28 years later."
A Post-Watergate Staple
Craig Montesano | Washington, DC United States | 01/09/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"What is it about this movie that makes it so compelling? After countless viewings, I still can't put my finger on it -- but let's consider the crucial elements of "Condor."First, the paucity of dialogue -- in other words, what Redford displays and emotes rather than says -- is powerful. It seems that for the first time in his career, Redford is really challenged to act instead of being just another pretty cinematic face. If ever a man could give the impression of being both haunted and hunted, Redford's a cinch in "Condor."This is also a great New York City film. Its streets, back alleys, and buildings -- in particular, the World Trade Center -- all play supporting roles. Sidney Pollack makes good use of the then-newly finished twin towers in "Condor," and this viewer lamented their destruction after watching scenes featuring the main lobby and a top-floor office inhabited by CIA deputy director Cliff Robertson.The grainy quality of the film, matched with an often funky, sometimes melancholy soundtrack scored by Dave Grusin, also adds to the aura of "Condor." It's as if Pollack attempted to do an American sendup of a French intrigue film. Grusin's music also is not what you'd expect in a spy film, in that it has not a hint of the James Bond sound. Then again, the film is not a romantic spy thriller, so it works.In fact, Pollack and Redford successfuly convey a post-Watergate paranoia that the citizens' government is 'out there' and will stop at nothing to hunt down the truth-seeking rogue. Phone taps and plumbers (disguised, this time, as mailmen) abound. Suitably, "Three Days of the Condor" ends with a very anti-establishment message.This film deserves to be placed in the list of top twenty great American films of the modern cinematic era (however one judges that). "Condor" is good the first time around and seems to be more enjoyable with subsequent viewings. Far from being a period piece, it stands the test of time as a thriller that is also thoughtful."
A TImeless Classic
Bill Binkelman, Wind and Wire | Minneapolis, MN United States | 12/29/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"THREE DAYS OF THE CONDOR is one of the finest espionage thrillers ever filmed. But it's not just entertaining. The script is thought-provoking and reflects fears and paranoias that still pervade our country's consciousness today. Robert Redford has never been better. His character is a refreshing hero who succeeds using his brain, not his brawn or some ridiculous firepower. There are so many great supporting performances as well, including Cliff Robertson, John Houseman and Faye Dunaway (who looks simply gorgeous). Max VonSydow plays the ultimate assasin for hire, equalled only by Edward Fox's turn in THE DAY OF THE JACKAL. The film's editing is perfect and the music score (by Dave Grusin) still sounds great, (quite a feat since the music from many films of this period sound terribly dated). All in all, I consider this possibly the best example of a domestic (versus international) espionage thriller and faultless in all aspects of production. The final freeze-frame shot is a stunner."