Harry Caul (Gene Hackman) is the preeminent West Coast wiretapper bar none, with not a San Francisco verbal exchange privileged thanks to his state of the art gadgetry and brilliant methods. His personal life, however, is a lonely, unguarded, and vulnerable state of paranoia. When he is hired to surveil a young couple by the chairman of a powerful corporation, he finds himself entwined in an obscure murder plot and his private life begins to unravel as his conscience gradually gets the better of him. A somewhat diminished thread in an unprecedented string of classic films of the 1970s, Francis Ford Coppola's The Conversation is a tense, intelligent thriller that takes its time while functioning as a character study, all leading to a haunting resounding payoff, with Hackman unforgettable in a career defining performance.
**** out of ****