Three Days of the Condor (1975)

Three Days of the Condor (1975), directed by Sydney Pollack.

A CIA analyst returns with lunch to find his entire office murdered. He doesn't know it yet but it is all his fault: he asked the wrong questions. Now he's on the run, never knowing who to trust. A secret agency within the agency? It's always a risk.

This is the prototype of the "spy on the run from his own people" thriller. In this case he is not a field agent but he learns quickly. Luckily he knows how to wiretap.

Robert Redford does well enough in the role, but is always too damn pretty. He had a standard look for the entire decade: helmet of hair, jeans, tweedy sportcoat.

We have an odd semi-romantic interlude with Faye Dunaway, a woman he kidnaps. It slows down the middle of the story, although we do wonder where this is going. I suspect this was bait for female viewers who entertained lubricious fantasies of being in that situation, since they know Redford is an adorable good guy.

Max von Sydow is great as an unexpectedly friendly master assassin.

The plot takes advantage of the very bad repute spy agencies enjoyed during the 70s.


Available on Blu-ray.