The Candidate

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  • Drama, Realism , produced in 1972 USA
  • Actors: Robert Redford, Peter Boyle
  • Directed by: Michael Ritchie
  • Rating: 7.1 out of 10
  • Plot Summary: Michael Ritchie once again shows his impressive ability to tackle new genres, after DOWNHILL RACER and PRIME CUT, with THE CANDIDATE, a scathing depiction of the hypocrisy and complexity in the American political world.

    Bill McKay (Robert Redford), an idealistic young lawyer and son of a famous governor, is pressured into running for the United States Senate against the popular incumbent, with the assurance that he will lose and not have to give up his integrity or ideals. However, as the campaign deepens, he finds himself giving in, allowing himself to be manipulated as the polls slowly change and swing in his favor. Soon his backers decide that they want him to win after all. By the time Election Day arrives, McKay has become the person that he used to speak so vehemently against. Working from an Oscar-winning script by former Eugene McCarthy speechwriter Jeremy Larner, Ritchie films THE CANDIDATE with a heavy dose of semi-documentary realism that makes for an emotionally impacting experience.
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