The three days of the Condor

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German title The three days of the Condor
Original title Three Days of the Condor
Country of production United States
original language English
Publishing year 1975
length 113 minutes
Age rating FSK 16
Director Sydney Pollack
script Lorenzo Semple Jr. ,
David Rayfiel
production Stanley Schneider
music Dave Grusin
camera Owen Roizman
cut Don Guidice ,
Fredric Steinkamp

The three days of the Condor is an American political thriller or agent film from 1975, based on the novel The 6 Days of the Condor (original title: Six Days of the Condor , 1974) by James Grady . The film was produced by Stanley Schneider and directed by Sydney Pollack . Alternative title is Meeting Point Midnight CIA The film violated common genre conventions and deconstructed the classic thriller in which civil servants fight against negative lawbreakers. Here state authorities were questioned, so that this film can be added to the " New Hollywood ".


Joseph Turner is one of eight members of the CIA Intelligence Service who, in a New York office disguised as the American Literary Historical Society , sift through international literature and see if it contains strategies and tips that could be of use to the CIA could.

When Turner - code name "Condor" - returned to the office one day from a brief errand, he found all of his colleagues there shot and the rooms in utter devastation. He takes her pistol from the receptionist's drawer and leaves the office. He found the seventh colleague, who was not present because of illness, shot dead in his apartment at home. He breaks off the return to his own when he is casually informed by his landlady, whom he meets in front of the house, that two colleagues are waiting for him in his apartment. Before he is also the only survivor of the group to be eliminated, he must find out who carried out this attack and why. Turner barely escapes an assassination attempt while trying to contact CIA headquarters in Langley for instructions and protection. He shoots the assassin, who is unknown to him, and he in turn shoots the colleague who was brought with him to build trust and who Turner knows. At least now it turns out that CIA agents are responsible for the attack.

Turner, who has no experience in the field, has to improvise and forces a random victim, the photographer Kathy Hale, with his gun to take him with her in her car so that she can temporarily hide in her apartment. After a short break, he ties and gags her, leaves her in her apartment and takes her car. When he wanted to question the unsuspecting wife of the shot colleague, who was also at risk as a result of the previous events, and wanted to bring her to safety, he got to know the murderer who had been set on him in an agonizing elevator ride and was even addressed friendly by him. With luck and a trick he manages to escape in Kathy's car. But the murderer still manages to read the license plate number of the car with a telescopic sight. Turner returns to Kathy's apartment, frees her, and forces her to call her friend who is waiting for her in Vermont to go skiing. But soon he can persuade her to help him voluntarily, and a tender romance develops between the two - despite the ongoing threat to Turner's life. After spending the night together, another killer, disguised as a parcel delivery man, appears in Kathy's apartment the next morning . He is killed by Turner after a violent fight.

Kathy helps him find out who the person inside the CIA is that he has already spoken to on the phone for protection. It's Higgins, an obscure senior CIA in New York. Kathy and Turner kidnap Higgins from a restaurant and question him with poor results. Higgins then tries to understand what is going on from within the CIA. Eventually, Turner discovers that the American Literary Historical Society was extinguished by another senior CIA official in Langley. When Turner visits the person responsible in his apartment and confronts him, he suddenly understands that a literary analysis written by Turner saw a threat to his simulation games of an invasion of the USA in oil states in the Middle East or in Venezuela . Surprisingly, the hit man also appears there, disarming Turner, but not shooting him, but his former employer, who has since fallen out of favor. The hit man leaves Turner unmolested and advises him to go to Europe, that would be his choice anyway. When he hears that Turner wants to stay in the United States, he gives him the gun back.

Turner, who is still in mortal danger because of his findings, contacts Higgins again and meets with him on the street in New York. He tells him that he passed the whole story on to the New York Times . However, Higgins asked him if he was sure that the newspaper would actually publish the article. Turner says yes, leaves Higgins and disappears into the street. The uncertainty remains.



Three Days of the Condor was filmed in the following locations (in order of appearance in the film; all in Manhattan , New York City unless otherwise noted):


Unless expressly stated otherwise, all titles are by Dave Grusin .

  1. Condor! (Theme from 3 Days of the Condor) - 3:35
  2. Yellow Panic - 2:15
  3. Flight of the Condor - 2:25
  4. We'll Bring You Home - 2:24
  5. Out to Lunch - 2:00
  6. Goodbye for Kathy (Love Theme from 3 Days of the Condor) - 2:16
  7. I've Got You Where I Want You (Grusin / Bahler; sung by Jim Gilstrap ) - 3:12
  8. Flashback to Terror - 2:24
  9. Sing Along with the CIA - 1:34
  10. Spies of a Feather, Flocking Together (Love Theme from 3 Days of the Condor) - 1:55
  11. Silver Bells (Livingstone / Evans; Vocal: Marti McCall) - 2:37
  12. Medley: a) Condor! (Theme); b) I've Got You Where I Want You - 1:57


"The equally intelligent and exciting political thriller refers critically to the questionable role of a secret service that runs the risk of contaminating the state it was supposed to protect with totalitarian tendencies."

“The film […] draws the main part of its tension from the fact that it leaves the viewer in the dark until the very end and withheld information from them. Nonetheless, Pollack's film [...] is a worthy attempt to show that power and morality have little in common, especially in a society that calls itself democratic. "

- Sönke Krüger : The great film lexicon: all top films from A – Z, 1995

"The subtle, biting plot takes up the distrust of the American people towards the security authorities and the government after the Watergate affair and critically reflects the opaque attitude of political institutions."

- ARTE magazine

"Conclusion: a classic of the 70s paranoia cinema"

Awards (selection)

Television series

In 2018, the ten-part television series Condor , based on the book and film, aired.


Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Mention in Focus
  2. ^ Three Days of the Condor . In: On the Set of New York . Retrieved May 3, 2013.
  3. ^ Locations for Three Days of the Condor . In: Internet Movie Database . Retrieved May 3, 2013.
  4. The three days of the Condor. In: Lexicon of International Films . Film service , accessed September 17, 2017 .Template: LdiF / Maintenance / Access used 
  5. Sönke Krüger in: Dirk Manthey, Jörg Altendorf, Willy Loderhose (eds.): Das große Film-Lexikon. All top films from A-Z . Second edition, revised and expanded new edition. Verlagsgruppe Milchstraße, Hamburg 1995, ISBN 3-89324-126-4 , p. 685 f .
  6. ARTE magazine 1.1. – 31.1.2010, p. 41, publisher: ARTE GEIE
  7. film review