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Kino Lorber Brings Three Days of the Condor to 4K UHD

Image courtesy of Kino Lorber

While Warner Bros. has dominated the 4K UHD Blu-ray offerings this year for its 100th anniversary, don’t forget about the Kino Lorber company. A champion of cinephiles everywhere, Kino Lorber has continuously revitalized older films for its “Studio Classics” line of physical media. We can thank them for giving a new 4K disc treatment to 1975’s political thriller Three Days of the Condor starring Robert Redford, and Max von Sydow. The new disc is now available online and in stores after a late August arrival. Film Obsessive was granted a preview copy to review for our “On the Shelf” series.


A man pulls a woman towards him to talk in a street in Three Days of the Condor
Image courtesy of Kino Lorber

Directed by two-time Academy Award winner Sydney Pollack, Three Days of the Condor follows Joseph Turner (Redford), a low-level CIA analyst codenamed “Condor.” His mundane job involves reading novels to spot potential codes and secrets, but one day he returns from lunch to find his entire New York office team murdered. Suspicion and paranoia ensue as Turner realizes he’s being pursued by unknown assassins, likely from within his own agency (headed by future Spider-Man Uncle Ben Cliff Robertson).

Desperate and on the run, Joseph kidnaps Kathy Hale (Dunaway, an Oscar winner the next year with Network) to secure his safety. Together, they embark on a tense and dangerous journey to unravel the conspiracy behind the killings. Along the way, they uncover a sinister plot involving covert government operations and oil interests. As they evade relentless pursuers (led by von Sydow’s assassin), Turner must navigate a complex web of deception and betrayal within the intelligence community while struggling to trust anyone, even within his own agency. By delving into themes of government secrecy, the blurred lines of morality in espionage, and the lengths one must go to survive in a world filled with hidden agendas, Three Days of the Condor has been celebrated as one of the best political thrillers in Hollywood history.


4K disc cover art for Three Days of the Condor
Image courtesy of Kino Lorber

Unlike a big anniversary release or special occasion event, this 4K UHD disc is essentially an upgraded copy of previous DVD and Blu-ray editions. The boost is more for the technical capabilities than the features. The new set has a 4K disc and a matching Blu-ray, but not digital edition. For the tuned measurables, the 4K disc rocks 5.1 surround and 2.0 lossless audio levels on a triple-layered UHD100 Disc with the high contrast color work fitting of the format.

While no film legend cast get-together happened (gosh, imagine getting Redford and Dunaway together again to talk about this one with today’s lenses), there is a new commentary track added to Three Days of the Condor. Following the renewed directors track from Pollack, film historians Steve Mitchell and Nathaniel Thompson unite to promote and enhance this film’s last impact. Their commentary is clear, reflective, interesting, and rich in reflection. We’ve come a long way in technology and hot topics since 1975, but these two remind us how thrilling and smart the film remains to this day.

Buyers will have to switch to the Blu-ray disc for the full swatch of special features. The two chief inclusions are “Something About Sydney Pollack” and “More About the Condor.” The Pollack piece is a nearly hour-long biographical documentary following the chatty and seasoned director in 2004 as he was preparing for The Interpreter and reflecting on his process and career decisions. Long heralded a level or two below his showy peers like Spielberg and Scorsese, there really wasn’t a genre or project Pollack couldn’t complete with skill. The “More About the Condor” featurette comes from 2003 and features Redford reflecting on what the film was, its politics, and how it boosted his career.

The cherries on top of this disc are sweet menu music from Dave Grusin’s slick score and a thick collection of trailers collected similar genre entries of the 1970s as well as films from Redford, Dunaway, and Pollack. That nice roster includes Three Days of the Condor itself, Redford’s Indecent Proposal, Dunaway glowing in the original The Thomas Crown Affair, Needful Things, Malone, Pollack’s aforementioned The Interpreter, The Groundstar Conspiracy, The Eiger Sanction, and the fellow conspiracy classic Marathon Man. All in all, with that new educational commentary, being able to get a fresh edition of Three Days of the Condor with retained production specials still counts as worthy preservation.

Written by Don Shanahan

DON SHANAHAN is a Chicago-based Rotten Tomatoes-approved film critic writing here on Film Obsessive as the Editor-in-Chief and Content Supervisor for the film department. He also writes for his own website, Every Movie Has a Lesson. Don is one of the hosts of the Cinephile Hissy Fit Podcast on the Ruminations Radio Network and sponsored by Film Obsessive. As a school teacher by day, Don writes his movie reviews with life lessons in mind, from the serious to the farcical. He is a proud director and one of the founders of the Chicago Indie Critics and a voting member of the nationally-recognized Critics Choice Association, Online Film Critics Society, North American Film Critics Association, International Film Society Critics Association, Internet Film Critics Society, Online Film and TV Association, and the Celebrity Movie Awards.

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