Saturday, March 13, 2010
Three Days of the Condor
Robert Redford stars as "Condor", a C.I.A. book reader. He reads mysteries and spy stories for the C.I.A. Not too bad a job, eh? But when his entire office is murdered he becomes a man on the run. What starts as a simple spy story becomes a detailed and sophisticated mystery. Who is after Condor? Why were a bunch of people who read books killed? How can he escape his pursuers? Condor is constantly underestimated. He reads books, he is not a field agent. Perhaps he has turned to the other side? Three Days of the Condor is a solid and intelligent suspense yarn.
Director Sydney Pollack does a fine job of building suspense while keeping a detailed story moving forward. Pollack is one of the finest directors of the last 30 years. Scorsese, Coppola and Spielberg get the attention, but Pollack belongs in that conversation. He shows his skills here. The film features excellent pace, strong characters and twists that are surprises, but believable ones. Solid script was written by Lorenzo Semple Jr. and David Rayfiel. Based on the novel 'Six Days of the Condor' by James Grady. Why the movie is only 3 days while the book is 6 days is a mystery for the ages.
Faye Dunaway gives an attention-grabbing performance as an innocent bystander that Redford uses to escape capture. Redford, Cliff Robertson, John Houseman and Max von Sydow all give fine performances as well.
Suspenseful, intelligent and well written. Enjoy!
Filmed in 1975, directed by Sydney Pollack, written by Lorenzo Semple Jr. and David Rayfiel, starring Robert Redford, Faye Dunaway, Cliff Robertson and Max von Sydow.
Artistic note: Sydney Pollack brought a lawsuit against Danish TV after screening Three Days of the Condor (1975) in pan-and-scan in 1991. The court ruled that the pan scanning conducted by Danish television was a 'mutilation' of the film and a violation of Pollack's 'Droit Moral', his legal right as an artist to maintain his reputation by protecting the integrity of his work.