The Day of the Jackal

Watch The Day of the Jackal

"Nameless, faceless... relentlessly moving towards the date with death that would rock the world."
  • PG
  • 1973
  • 2 hr 25 min
  • 7.8  (44,241)
  • 80

The Day of the Jackal is a British-French thriller movie from 1973 directed by Fred Zinnemann, based on the novel of the same name by Frederick Forsyth. The movie stars Edward Fox as the main protagonist, who is known only by his code name, "The Jackal." Terence Alexander and Michel Auclair also star in the film. The plot revolves around an attempted assassination of the French president Charles de Gaulle, who was a polarizing figure in France at the time. The OAS (Organisation Armée Secrète), a right-wing extremist group, has decided to eliminate de Gaulle due to his policies towards Algeria. The OAS leaders hire a British assassin, known only as "The Jackal," to carry out the task.

As the plot of the movie unfolds, viewers see the meticulous planning that goes into the assassination plot. The Jackal is shown creating a wide range of identities, getting a fake passport, and even getting a custom-built sniper rifle. Meanwhile, the French government is also working to track down and stop the assassin, led by the highly skilled police inspector Claude Lebel (played by Michael Lonsdale).

Throughout the movie, viewers are kept on the edge of their seats as The Jackal plots his assassination attempt and eludes the police at every turn. The tension builds as the clock ticks down and the highly anticipated date of de Gaulle's assassination approaches.

One of the key strengths of The Day of the Jackal is the suspenseful atmosphere created by Zinnemann. The movie has been praised for its attention to detail in terms of characterisation and storytelling. The film doesn't rely on action scenes to build tension; instead, the intelligent cat-and-mouse game between The Jackal and the police keeps the audience hooked. Moreover, the meticulous preparation that goes into both the assassins' and the police's work makes the story believable and highly immersive.

Another strength of the movie is Edward Fox's performance as The Jackal. Fox plays the part of the cool, calculating assassin perfectly. He portrays the character as highly intelligent, methodical, and entirely focused on the task at hand. Moreover, Fox manages to convey a sense of danger and unpredictability that is essential for this type of character. His performance is chilling, yet understated, which only adds to the tension of the movie.

The supporting cast, including Terence Alexander as the OAS leader and Michael Lonsdale as the police inspector, also puts in strong performances. The film's direction by Fred Zinnemann is also lauded, with critics praising his ability to keep the audience engaged and on the edge of their seats throughout the entire runtime of the movie.

In conclusion, The Day of the Jackal is a classic thriller movie that has stood the test of time. The film's intricate plotting, smart characterization, and suspenseful atmosphere make it an engrossing watch that keeps the audience guessing until the very end. Edward Fox's performance as The Jackal is also a memorable highlight of the movie. If you are a fan of thrillers or political dramas, this movie comes highly recommended.

The Day of the Jackal is a 1973 action movie with a runtime of 2 hours and 25 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.8 and a MetaScore of 80.

The Day of the Jackal
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The Day of the Jackal is available to watch, stream, download and buy on demand at Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, YouTube VOD and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent The Day of the Jackal for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    2 hr 25 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    7.8  (44,241)
  • Metascore