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3 Days of the Condor (4K UHD Review)

REVIEW OVERVIEW

The Film
The Video (Overall)
HDR Effect
The Audio
The Supplements
Overall

SUMMARY

A CIA analyst in Manhattan discovers his colleagues dead and goes on the run, not knowing who in the government to trust.

Estimated reading time: 6 minutes

3 Days of the Condor is the 1975 post-Watergate era thriller from director Sydney Pollack featuring Robert Redford and Faye Dunaway. Reveling in the paranoia and government mistrust of the era that, frankly, has never fully evaporated, the story follows CIA analyst Turner (Redford) who spends his time in a little-known branch office in New York where they read every book that is published to fish for potential usable spy craft. When Turner sends a report to his superior in DC that he believes there could be a shadow CIA in operation, he places himself in danger. Returning from bringing back lunch for his colleagues, he finds the whole office killed and he goes on the run. Calling in tothe home office, giving his codename ’Condor,’ a meet is setup to bring him in, but someone tries to kill him. Not knowing whom to trust, Turner goes on the run, finding an unsuspecting woman, Kathy (Faye Dunaway), who he kidnaps so he can lay low at her apartment. Kathy becomes his only ally as he tries to figure out the conspiracy and runs from the cops and the mysterious Alsatian hitman (Max von Sydow) who has been sent to kill him.

Like other films from this era such as The Conversation and The Parallax View, 3 Days of the Condor is rife with claustrophobia, paranoia, and most of all, mistrust of all government institutions, even the United States Post Office does not avoid scrutiny in this one. Pollack’s taut direction keeps the suspense and twists believable even as the romantic twist between Redford and Dunaway comes across feeling a bit forced into the narrative. It is a case of Stockholm Syndrome on steroids perhaps.

The on location shooting in New York City brings an appropriately gritty and authentic aura to the overall narrative of the little guy against the Goliathan government’s deep conspiracy. This is a true classic of the era that still stands up in our contemporary era.

  • Robert Redford and Faye Dunaway in 3 Days of the Condor (1975)
  • Robert Redford and Faye Dunaway in 3 Days of the Condor (1975)
  • Max von Sydow in Three Days of the Condor (1975)
  • Robert Redford and Cliff Robertson in 3 Days of the Condor (1975)
  • Robert Redford in 3 Days of the Condor (1975)
  • Robert Redford in 3 Days of the Condor (1975)
  • 3 Days of the Condor (Kino Lorber Studio Classics)
  • 3 Days of the Condor (Kino Lorber Studio Classics)

The Video

Kino Lorber Studio Classics lists 3 Days of the Condor as being a “Brand New 2023 HDR/Dolby Vision Master – From a 2023 4K Scan of the Original Camera Negative.” The film is presented in a 2.35:1 HEVC 2160p (4K UHD) Dolby Vision encodement on 4K disc and the Blu-ray is also taken from the new 4K scan presented in 2.35:1 AVC 1080p.

This is a grainy film that can look a little soft and have a dull, desaturated palette that does not necessarily ‘pop.’ The Dolby Vision grading does not add a lot of extra overall brightness, but the specular highlights in nighttime scenes on the mid-1970s computer monitors, in streetlamps, and headlights does have a lot of extra ‘pop’ and shine. Color accents in shadows and backgrounds also have more gradations than one can see on the Blu-ray and the granularity comes across just a bit finer and more reserved than on the Blu-ray.

The Audio

The lossless 5.1 mix in DTS-HD Master Audio adds just a hint of ambience and an extended LFE to what is for all intents and purposes a more dynamic version of the mono mix, which is included in DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0. If you want that extra oomph with a more focused center channel than the 5.1 is the way to go, otherwise the original mono mix will be more authentic and equally intelligible.

The Supplements

Bonus Features:

  • Audio Commentary by Director Sydney Pollack
  • Audio Commentary by Film Historians Steve Mitchell and Nathaniel Thompson (NEW)

Blu-ray Bonus Features:

  • Audio Commentary by Director Sydney Pollack
  • Audio Commentary by Film Historians Steve Mitchell and Nathaniel Thompson (NEW)
  • Something About Sydney Pollack: Documentary (SD; 00:59:06)
  • More About the Condor: Featurette (SD; 00:24:57)
  • 3 Days of the Condor Trailer (1080p; 00:03:05)

The Final Assessment

A fantastic edge-of-the-seat thriller with hammer-hit acting is presented in a beautiful transfer on 4K from Kino Lorber Studio Classics. Highly Recommended.


3 Days of the Condor is out on 4K Ultra HD Combo August 29, 2023 from Kino Lorber Studio Classics.


  • Rating Certificate: R
  • Studios & Distributors: Wildwood Enterprises | Dino De Laurentiis Company (uncredited) | Paramount Pictures | Kino Lorber Studio Classics
  • Director: Sydney Pollack
  • Written By: James Grady | Lorenzo Semple Jr. | David Rayfiel
  • Run Time: 117 Mins.
  • Street Date: 29 August 2023
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Video Format: HEVC 2160p (4K UHD)
  • HDR Format: Dolby Vision (HDR10 Compatible)
  • Primary Audio: English DTS-HD MA 5.1
  • Secondary Audio: English DTS-HD MA 2.0 Mono
  • Subtitles: English SDH
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A CIA analyst in Manhattan discovers his colleagues dead and goes on the run, not knowing who in the government to trust.3 Days of the Condor (4K UHD Review)