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The Conversation

The Conversation is a 1974 American mystery thriller film written, produced, and directed by Francis Ford Coppola and starring Gene Hackman, John Cazale, Allen Garfield, Cindy Williams, Frederic Forrest, Harrison Ford, Teri Garr, and Robert Duvall. The film revolves around a surveillance expert and the moral dilemma he faces when his recordings reveal a potential murder. Coppola cited the Michelangelo Antonioni thriller Blowup (1966) as a key influence, but since the film was released to theaters just a few months before Richard Nixon resigned as president, he felt that audiences interpreted the film as being a reaction to the Watergate scandal.

Plot

Surveillance expert Harry Caul, who runs his own company in San Francisco, is obsessed with his own privacy. His apartment is almost bare behind its triple-locked door and burglar alarm, he uses pay phones to make calls and claims to have no home telephone, and his office is enclosed in a chain-link cage in a corner of a much larger warehouse. He has no friends, his girlfriend Amy knows little about him, and his sole hobby is playing along to jazz records on a tenor saxophone alone in his apartment.

Awards