The Candidate is an excellent drama starring Robert Redford as a naive liberal political novice who wises up fast. Walter Coblenz produced the zesty, gritty film, directed and paced superbly by Michael Ritchie. Peter Boyle and Allen Garfield are tops as campaign supervisors.
The well-structured and developed screenplay takes Redford from a rural legal assistance vocation through the temptations and tortures of mass-merchandising politics, to an upset victory over longtime California Senator Don Porter. Redford’s superior acting talents, which not-often-enough are tapped by the scripts he decides to do, are nearly all on display herein in a virtuoso peformance.
Intercutting of some actual political banquet footage is excellent, and the entire film often seems like a documentary special in the best sense of the word.
1972: Best Original Story & Screenplay.
Nomination: Best Sound