The Conversation

Francis Ford Coppola | 1974 | ★★★★½
Tasked with recording the clandestine conversations of a pair of presumably adulterous lovers (Cindy Williams & Frederic Forrest), a renowned private surveillance operative (Gene Hackman) – still wracked with guilt over a past assignment (one that resulted in the deaths of three of those involved) – starts to worry more and more, as the case slowly begins to reveal itself, about the intentions of his secretive employer (Robert Duvall) and shifty assistant (Harrison Ford). Formally adventurous, with interesting visuals and an oft stunning soundscape, The Conversation proves decidedly brave for a mainstream work. Never the less, bolstered by a seductive score and several fine performances, it also proves an engrossing, emotionally involving one as well.