The Parallax View (1974)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

The Parallax View Videos & Photos

Movie Info

While the Watergate scandal filled the headlines, Alan J. Pakula's 1974 thriller took its inspiration from the conspiracy theories surrounding the Kennedy assassination. Journalist Joe Frady (Warren Beatty) misses witnessing the assassination of a senator at Seattle's Space Needle, but his newswoman former girlfriend Lee Carter (Paula Prentiss) was there. Even after a government commission concludes that it was a freak lone assassin, Lee tells Joe that she fears for her life since other … More

Rating: R
Genre: Drama, Mystery & Suspense, Classics
Directed By:
Written By: David Giler, Lorenzo Semple Jr.
In Theaters:
On DVD: Jun 22, 1999
Paramount Pictures


as Joseph Frady

as Lee Carter

as Austin Tucker

as Jack Younger

as Editor Edgar Rintels

as Sheriff L.D.

as Deputy Red

as Busboy/Assassin

as Sen. Carroll

as Mrs. Carroll

as Art, an Assassin

as Schecter

as Shirley

as Sen. Hammond

as Organist

as Schwartzkopf

as Former FBI Agent Tur...

as Commission Spokesman

as Commission Spokesman

as Tucker's Aide
Show More Cast

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Critic Reviews for The Parallax View

All Critics (26) | Top Critics (5)

For my taste the suspenseful set pieces go on much too long, and the message -- that right-wing conspiracy is built into the American political and corporate structure -- is overstated.

Full Review… | June 7, 2007
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

It's an astringently cynical take on official history, with Warren Beatty as a muckraker investigating the strange aftershocks of a senator's killing.

Full Review… | June 7, 2007
Village Voice
Top Critic

Pakula's production and direction are lavish in physical details.

Full Review… | June 7, 2007
Top Critic

Excellent performances; fascinating film.

Full Review… | February 9, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

The thrills don't mount as the film goes on. They don't even accumulate. Once they are experienced, they dissolve so thoroughly that by the end you're likely to feel as cheated as I did.

Full Review… | May 20, 2003
New York Times
Top Critic

Pakula and Gordon Willis' cinematography wring the ominous from the ordinary with utter severity

Full Review… | March 15, 2010

Audience Reviews for The Parallax View


A smart, engrossing paranoid political thriller concerning a journalist (Warren Beatty) who stumbles upon a conspiracy in which a senator who was murdered three years ago might actually have been offed by the government. While it does not possess the same character depth such as say, "The Conversation", another paranoid political thriller, had, it still is exciting and watchable due to the twists it implements. The last fifteen minutes or so are particularly arresting, with sharp camera work which captures memorable shots, including its smart, cleverly pieced together grand finale, which doesn't disappoint.

Dan Schultz
Dan Schultz

Super Reviewer

Maybe I need to see this movie again, but I thought it was really slow and boring. The story was pretty good, though. Overall, it's okay.

Aj V

Super Reviewer


Very slow paced and manipulative, but it's such a unique and powerful experience. Government conspiracies are either topics for very bad movies or very good movies, this is definitely one of the better. Warren Beatty plays such a great character and way of attaining the plot's information. This is more a cautionary tale about digging too deep and how there are forces at work that we aren't even aware of. For a 70s premise, this must've been shocking at its release and still sort've is. To have a sense of powerlessness is truly scary.

Conner Rainwater

Super Reviewer

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