The Conversation - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Conversation Reviews

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April 22, 2016
bit disappointed given the hype
April 9, 2016
A perfect movie. Which is more than I can say about The Godfather
March 10, 2016
1974's The Conversations shows us once again why Francis Ford Coppola was the god, and definitive filmmaker of the 70's because he presents us, yet again, a masterpiece.
This movie is mysterious, thrilling, exciting, yet slow and also sometimes dragging in pace, which is the only complaint i can think about. The leading man, called Harry Caul, as he is portrayed by Gene Hackman, is an expert wiretapper and one of the most affecting, tragic and interesting characters in the history of cinema.
The writing is superb, it keeps you guessing, and the camera work is methodically slow and beautiful.
At the first viewing, you might be a bit confused or 'bored' because you have some sort of a clue what's going on but it doesnt seem all that interesting, but when the final moments hit towards the end of the film, you see the full picture, which makes latter viewings even more rewarding.

The Conversation is yet another masterwork by Francis Ford Coppola
Super Reviewer
March 5, 2016
The Conversation is definitely one of Francis Ford Coppola's best work as well as being very psychological and scary.
March 2, 2016
Sempre un capolavoro e Gene Hackman é un mito.
February 20, 2016
2-6-2016. Original rating: 11-20-2012 (9/10).
February 3, 2016
think i saw this when in basic training at Ord. but no, cuz that was '70. so maybe later when was at summer camp? really don't remember it well, but wd be interested again.
January 14, 2016
The Conversation Is A Low-Budget Art House Style Project Directed Francis Ford Coppola. The Conversation Is An Excellently Directed Crime Drama Which Delivers An Overly Long Build Up Of Suspense Which Thankfully Pays Off. The Film Boasts Some Great Performances From Hackman, & An Equally Entertaining Performance From (Then Rising Star) Harrison Ford. Made Between The Godfather Parts 1 & 2, Coppola Returns To His Art House Roots In This Homage To Michelangelo Antonioni's Blow-Up (1966).
Super Reviewer
½ January 3, 2016
Ahhhh ... just because yer paranoid don't mean they're not out to get you, eh? Yes, yes, yes ...
January 2, 2016
Never expected something like this from Coppola.
You have to watch this at least a few times..
½ December 31, 2015
Francis Ford Coppola is one of the greatest classical directors of our time. He is most known for his Godfather trilogy and Apocalypse Now. "The Conversation" is a crime thriller directed by Coppola, and stars Gene Hackman and Harrison Ford.

Harry Caul (Hackman) is a surveillance specialist who works for privatized companies. Using his equipment to spy on people's conversations, Caul is hired by a mysterious client (Ford) who has him tail a young couple. While going through the recorded material, Caul hears the subjects discussing that they may be in danger. Fearing he may have just participated in something terrible, Caul struggles within.

In most of his films, Gene Hackman is pretty energized. In this film, Hackman gives a shockingly reserved and subdued performance. It was an incredibly different performance compared to his other films. His character is really secretive, and doesn't enjoy talking about himself. Unfortunately, you don't really get to know the character, which makes it difficult to actually like him. However, you can tell he is struggling within, wrestling with the moral implications of helping his client. If not for Hackman's great performance, the central character would have fallen flat.

As a film, The Conversation is a tightly wound thriller that succeeds because of its tension. This film has to be digested. It's quite a slow burn to say the least. What makes it work is the writing and direction. The film's script is very well written. Francis Ford Coppola is a masterful writer and director. This film is very tense, and Coppola builds this tension throughout the film. As each minute passes, the tension rises. The climax of the film is incredible, and jaw dropping.

Unfortunately, I failed to enjoy the film as much as it seemed others did. The central character, while brilliantly played by Hackman, is largely uninteresting. He just isn't well written, and its hard to actually like him as a character when you know nothing about him. You are, like the other characters in the film, in the dark about who Caul is. Maybe this is what Coppola was going for. Finally, large portions of the film were noticeably slow for me. I feel this is a film I need to watch again to formulate my final thoughts.

"The Conversation" is in many ways an impressive picture. The writing, direction, and performances are top notch. The film is very well shot by cinematographer, Bill Butler. While the film is tense and thrilling, it is noticeably a slow burn. The central character-while brilliantly acted-is largely uninteresting. However, this is an impressive film in regards to its immense tension and shocking ending.
December 20, 2015
A study of the interior world of a wire-tapper. One can see how his psychological and moral underpinnings struggles with the information he gathered. The dubious yet innate nature of our pattern recognition, and the acquired sense of paranoid, in combination superimposes a particular interpretation as well as a moral impetus to act. This movie asks the deeper question of what we do, what we do not do, and the modern "just doing my job" escape for all things. It has a touch of nihilistic despair and isolation in the brilliant and understated performance of Hackman.
½ December 13, 2015
While this film is sporadically thrilling and intelligent like the character at its center, they both are flat and uninteresting most of the time. Gene Hackman does a great job and there are some intriguiging messages in the movie, but this movie was too boring to be called a thriller or be entertaining enough to watch a second time.
December 12, 2015
Hackman excels as the lonely everyman, but the fear of surveillance that is paranoia in 1974 would be considered naive futility in 2015.
½ December 6, 2015
Overrated. Decent thriller with some creepy and tense moments but the pacing is glacial and the main character is highly irritating. I do like the ending though!
November 2, 2015
um thriller de peritos num retrato do conflito entre ritual e responsabilidade, sem nunca deixar que os níveis de tensão desçam, ou provoquem uma uma introversão no enredo
October 27, 2015
Polanski like -style.
½ October 25, 2015
Coppola's deftness behind the camera is irrefutable, his widely-known propensity for large-scale epics supplemented by his abilities in other fields, particularly the contemplative thriller genre of which The Conversation fits into. In Harry Caul, Coppola finds a man desperately trying to hone in on the most minute details of his career in an attempt to find a larger meaning in his paranoid, isolated existence (Coppola fittingly cites Antonioni's Blowup as a major influence), ultimately finding nothing in the process. He reveals nothing about himself to anyone, holes up in warehouses and apartments to pour over the same recordings over and over again in order to forget about the existential dread he feels in the presence of other people, this process being carried out to his own detriment. The few final moments don't back down from this boldly pessimistic message, forcing the audience to recognize his lack of identity and the repercussions of the disconnect associated with unrestrained voyeurism, culminating in a powerful restating of Coppola's indisputable technical ability and his knack for telling universal stories through specific persons or groups.
October 10, 2015
It's a thriller and it's a character study, and both elements serve each other in ways that elevate the film. This is one of Hackman's finest performances. It's incredible to realize that the same actor who so completely embodied Popeye Doyle, completely embodies this timid, reserved paranoid man. The most obvious accomplishment is Walter Murch's sound design. In many ways this film is defined by it's soundscape.
½ October 6, 2015
A film dealing with the Orwellian society that was somewhat ahead of its time, and its themes of omnipresence and paranoia are ever-relevant. The style of direction and camera work takes us into a world where everyone is being watched and listened too against their will or knowledge. I like how it critiqued the hypocritical nature of surveillance workers, who spend their time bugging phones, installing cameras and observing a person's every move, but would be mortified if someone did the same to them. Gene Hackman plays one of cinemas most uptight introverts, a man so lacking in distinguishing features and characteristics that he's fascinatingly dull. It's obviously more of a movie for critics than the general public, with its slow pace and frequent solemnity, and the mystery is fairly underwhelming as we know almost none of the people involved. The film works much better as a think-piece than as entertainment, and I can't see myself rushing to watch it again, but after seeing it once I believe it to be clever, well-acted and with a near-constant atmosphere of claustrophobia and dread.
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