Old-School Paranoia

Benjamin Strong~Slate
Viewed today, the popular conspiracy movies of the 1970s, The Conversation especially, look strikingly optimistic beneath their cynicism. Like De Palma, Coppola had based his soundman protagonist on David Hemming's fashion photographer in Michelangelo Antonioni's Blow-Up (1966). In that film, a jaded man inadvertently records evidence of a murder, and, while trying to solve the crime, he is roused from his usual apathy. Harry fails to stop the conspiracy he discovers, but The Conversation implies that the truth is out there and needs only to be made public.
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The BBC's Christopher Frayling has an interview with Coppola.