The Candidate (1972) Movie Review Summary

Actors: Robert Redford, Peter Boyle, Melvyn Douglas, Don Porter

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of The Candidate (1972)

A handsome young California attorney and liberal advocate named Bill McKay (Redford) is persuaded by the Democratic party to run against the apparently undefeatable GOP incumbent, Crocker Jarman (Porter). With poor support (even from his father, the conservative retired governor John McKay played by veteran actor Melvyn Douglas), and expecting from the start to lose, McKay starts out the campaign speaking his mind. But as the race picks up steam, he finds himself having to cut corners and compromise in ways that make him uncomfortable. Directed by Michael Ritchie, this 1972 film was an early Redford triumph, and serves as a primer on the running of a political campaign. Peter Boyle plays McKay's campaign manager; Natalie Wood, Mayor Sam Yorty, ABC's Howard K. Smith, and Senators Alan Cranston, Humbert Humphrey, and George McGovern all appear as themselves. (In 2002, Redford and writer Larry Gelbart announced plans for a sequel to this fine film.)
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The review of this Movie prepared by David Loftus

Script Analysis of The Candidate (1972)

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Plot & Themes

Time/era of movie:    -   1960's-1970's Polit/Social/Race/Gender activism    -   Yes Plotlet:    -   left-wing-but-not-quite-communist activism! Job/Profession/Poverty Story?    -   Yes Job:    -   politician

Main Character

Identity:    -   Male Profession/status:    -   lawyer creature Age:    -   20's-30's Ethnicity/Nationality    -   White American


United States    -   Yes The US:    -   California City?    -   Yes City:    -   Los Angeles Misc setting    -   fancy mansion

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   no torture/death Any profanity?    -   Occasional swearing

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