Mini Movie Review – The Conversation, 1974

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I’m fairly certain the score by David Shire would drive me to a Harry level of insanity if The Conversation were even 60 seconds longer. Which is meant to be a compliment to the precision shown in the craftsmanship of this movie. Every choice is deliberate and clear. Every camera move, every music cue, every line of dialogue is used to a specific end. And like Shire’s score, Harry’s story starts as an elegant melody that builds into a cacophonous crescendo that simply cannot be withstood and must finally crumble into a morose denouement.

This will sound strange, but I’m a big fan of process. I enjoy seeing the inner-workings of things, be they objects or organizations, and film is uniquely suited to distilling and presenting process. The Conversation is all about process, from the physical process of surveillance to the mental process of paranoia, down to the process of storytelling itself, made apparent through the clarity of Coppola’s choices. Which is why there’s an odd sense of joy to watching this, despite its larger themes and the tragedy of Harry.

The Conversation is still available on Netflix and remains one of their best offerings, you owe it to yourself to check this out while it’s so available if you’re interested.

The Conversation scored: ★★★★★ (out of 5)

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