Three Days of the Condor is a great 1975 CIA spy thriller that was directed by the late, great Sydney Pollock and starring Robert Redford and Faye Dunaway.
The film is a thriller set in contemporary New York City, and is an excellent portrayal of the moral ambiguity that beset American society in the aftermath of Vietnam and Watergate. Taking advantage of the late breaking revelations of CIA abuses during the sixties and early seventies, Three Days of the Condor does an excellent job of tapping into the paranoia gripping America over government intelligence abuses.
I own the original book, owned the video and currently own the DVD. This is a great film to watch. It’s entertaining, well acted and has a strong, meaningful ending. It’s also the last film that Robert Redford made that wasn’t mired in the boring, overwrought Leftist buffet of out-dated Sixties hippie talking points.
Redford’s current attempt at rewriting American history, ala Michael Moore, is his latest effort, The Conspirator. In this film old Bob pulls out all the stops in his attempt to out propagandize both Michael Moore and Kevin Smith. Unfortunately, or perhaps fortunately, all Bob has done is direct a bore fest of semi-monumental proportions.
The conspirator of the title is not the assassin, actor, Confederate loyalist and steadfast Democrat, John Wilkes Booth. The conspirator is instead, Mary Surratt, the lone woman tried by a U.S. military tribunal for her involvement in the conspiracy to assassinate President Lincoln and the first woman executed by the United States.
As the stoic, minimalist victim of 19th century American imperialism, Robin Wright, the former Mrs. Sean Penn, plays her role as Mrs. Surratt with her typical actor’s method of staid victimization. But, to be fair, considering all the years she was married to Sean Penn, Ms.Wright has earned her stripes as a victim.
Redford’s The Conspirator opens on the 146th anniversary of Lincoln’s death and the 150th anniversary of the start of the Civil War, so public interest is higher than usual. With the upcoming trials for accused 9/11 terrorists at Guantanamo Bay, the political punching bag of terrorist’s rights has once again reared its ugly Progressive head.
In the steadily diminishing universe that is Robert Redford’s career, The Conspirator is a low-budget, independent film and the first film from a new production group, the American Film Company, dedicated to making accurate movies about American history.
Well, accurate in the mold of Progressive revisionist history.
But, I digress.
The consensus of most modern historians is that Surratt, who ran the boarding house where many of the conspirators met and whose son John was a Confederate spy and drinking buddy of Booth’s, was indeed guilty. But for there to be a movie, and a political ax to grind, Redford must portray Mrs. Surratt as a pious Catholic, devoted mother and, of course, a martyr to American political oppression.
Redford wastes a great deal of film time and badly written dialogue to portray the trial of the Lincoln conspirators as the true defenders of the American Constitution. Considering the reality that Progressives, such as Redford and Wright, consider the Constitution to be a hindrance to their concept of global unity is a tad disingenuous and downright irritating.
If this truck load of crap sounds familiar, it’s because you’ve heard it a hundred times before from every two bit Leftist talking head since 9/11. Redford clearly intends The Conspirator to be an Iraq / Afghanistan War allegory, right down to the Abu Ghraib-like hoods Union troops put over Surratt’s head, while she’s locked up in a military prison by an oppressive U.S. government intent only upon squelching American civil rights and freedoms.
Redford, directing true to form as the clique, cardboard Liberal he is, distorts history in what he surely believes is the real truth and the real crime that walked Mrs. Surratt up the gallows steps. During one of the many low points of the film, Surratt, who proudly wears her love for the Confederacy on her sleeve, exclaims to her lawyer that they were both fighting for a cause greater than themselves, “We’re the same,” she says.
“We’re the same?”
Is this the point that Redford has made two hours of film to put across?
If the Federal military bureaucracy of 1865 stands for the current Federal military bureaucracy of 2011, does that mean Mrs. Surratt, in all of her studied, stoic heroism is the face of modern Islam jihadist terrorism?
Surely, Bob can’t be taking the side of the Confederacy?
The side of slavery?
The side of a society that was ruled by a select group of rich, elitist Democrats?
In the gilded age of Obama, when the enemy of my enemy is my friend, does Redford’s coded cinematic embrace of Islamic martyrdom bring into the harsh light of day the American Lefts deadly dance with the vipers of Islamic fascism and totalitarian oppression?
If the Left believes they can harness the hatred and corrupted religious faith of the Islamic movement for their own goals of American political deconstruction, than their days may indeed be numbered. History has shown time and time again that when secular beliefs collide with religious, fanatical beliefs, the agnostics will always lose their heads.
So, as Redford, Michael Moore, Joy Behar, Bill Mahler and their assorted irk spring their populist voodoo on a naive, entertainment addicted population, they should proceed with caution. The ageless fable of the scorpion riding on the back of the frog to cross the stream is certainly appropriate to the naiveté of the Left, as they align themselves with the masked martyrs of Islam. When the frog asked the scorpion why he had mortally stung him after carrying him safely across the stream the answer was obvious, “I’m a scorpion. What did you expect?”
If Redford and his traveling circus band of Leftists are not careful they could be facing a similar fate as our poor, lamented frog. As surely as a scorpion will strike down a frog, the Progressive / Marxist / Socialist / Democrat alliance will learn that their partners in anti-Americanism pack a fatal sting, and were they to succeed would suffer a painful tenure in power as brief as three days of the commie.
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