DVD Review: Three Days of the Condor (Masters of Cinema)

Sidney Pollock was a strange American director for his time. Whilst he came through at the same time as many of the new American film-makers in the 1970s, his output and outlook were very much traditional. Unlike some of his peers including Robert Altman, Sam Peckinpah, Steven Spielberg and Francis Ford Coppola, he’s not a director whose name sells a film in itself. However, with credits to his name including Out of Africa, Tootsie, The Way We Were and Three Days of the Condor he made some important and influential cinema.

Joe (Robert Redford), codename Condor, is a CIA agent working in a clandestine analysis office in New York; part of a team reading published materials to look for any secret content. When he returns from a lunch-run Joe discovers that everyone in his office has been murdered. Fearing for his life, he has no option but to go into hiding, forcing a woman he meets by chance (Faye Dunaway) to secrete him in her apartment. Joe doesn’t know who to trust at ‘The Company’, desperately trying to clear his name whilst evading the attentions of an Eastern European contract killer called Joubert (Max von Sydow).

Pollack worked with Redford on several occasions, most successfully on Out of Africa which won Best Picture and hooked the former Best Director at the Academy Awards. Three Days of the Condor is a riveting spy drama. Don’t expect a chain of set pieces; this is a more tradition take on espionage and corruption. It’s full of intrigue, mystery and more than mild peril. Three Days of the Condor is a politically oriented spy drama which is up there with some of the best from the ’70s.

Special Edition Contents:

  • New high-definition presentation

  • Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hearing impaired

  • Stereo and 5.1 soundtrack options

  • Exclusive new video interview with film historian Sheldon Hall

  • The Directors: Sydney Pollack – A career-spanning appreciation of the director’s works

  • Original theatrical trailer

  • 32-page booklet featuring a new essay on the film by critic Michael Brooke, an extensive interview with Pollack, and archival images

Three Days of the Condor is released on Dual Format by Eureka as part of their Masters of Cinema Collection on Monday.

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