Sydney Pollack’s Three Days of the Condor

Classic Film Night

Filmed at the peak of Hollywood’s political paranoia, Sydney Pollack’s Three Days of the Condor (1975) is a well-made thriller that is tense and involving.

Joe Turner (Robert Redford) is a mild-mannerd CIA codebreaker who comes into work one day to find that all his co-workers have been murdered. He contacts the CIA for assistance, but the arranged rendezvous is a trap and he has to fight off an attack. With a hit man (Max von Sydow) on his tail, Turner forces a random woman to take him back to her apartment so that he can hide out. Despite being his captive, Kathy (Faye Dunaway) and Turner become lovers and she agrees to help him. Playing a deadly game of ‘cat-and-mouse’ Turner must try to stay alive long enough to find out why his superiors want him dead.

Film critc Roger Ebert says:

“We can believe that the CIA might behave in this way — and that it possibly has. The ending, when it comes and when it’s explained with such cruel logic by von Sydow, has the right ring. A very hollow one.”


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