The Candidate

Synopsis: Californian lawyer Bill McKay fights for the little man. His charisma and integrity get him noticed by the Democratic Party machine and he is persuaded to run for the Senate against an apparently unassailable incumbent. It's agreed he can handle it his own way, on his own terms. But once he's in the race and his prospects begin to improve, the deal starts to change.
Genre: Comedy, Drama
Director(s): Michael Ritchie
Production: Warner Bros. Pictures
  Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 1 nomination.
Rotten Tomatoes:
110 min

We want Neil! We want Neil!

A short time ago...

...our CBS vote profile analysis

declared Bingam the winner...

...and now NBC and ABC

computers agree.

- How is your sister?

- She's fine, thank you.

Jerry! How are you?

I thought you were in Philly.

I came back for the victory speech.


I want you to meet somebody.

Neil, we'd better go down now.

Let him through.

Get in the elevator.

They said when we got into this

we didn't have a chance.

They said there was

nothing we could do.

Now, the count has gone against us...

...whatever that means.

I'm not sorry,

and I hope you're not sorry.

I think we've proved our point.

We may have lost our personal campaign.

That's not important.

What matters....

- Some sauce for the road.

- Next time we'll get a live one.

I knew he didn't have a chance.

- The golf clubs are in my car.

- Let's clear out.

- Big Luke!

- Have a good night?

We took 2 out of 3.

Not bad for an off-year election.

You're glad you didn't

run this campaign, huh?

It was in the cards.

- Hell of a guy, though.

- Yes, nice guy.

He never had a chance.

Luke, I want to talk to you.

We'll keep going until we've licked

the things that brought us into this.

What's your hurry?

I'll walk you out.

We're supposed to see Forbes?

- He wants to talk about California.

- You got something going in California?


The Democrats should nominate Jarmon

themselves, they're so afraid of him.

You never know.

What's this?

- A guy I knew at Stanford.

- McKay's son!

I saw all this stuff, the legal aid bit.

Doesn't prove he's got kishkas.

Nobody will beat Jarmon.

Tell me something else I don't know.

What are these occupation charges

he's talking about?

He's talking about storage charges.

He charges us 3 times what it's worth...

...and wants to charge us

for not getting our car back?

Bill McKay?

Marvin Lucas.

I thought a beard was taboo in politics?

- Excuse me a second.

- He won't budge.

Ask him if he knows

what a license renewal hearing is.

Can we do that?

- What happened?

- They threw me out.

Said it was a matter

for the Federal Courts now.

Go back with a petition--

- We've had 3 months of briefs!

- The watershed thing is too important!

- Can I help you?

- No, I'll wait for McKay.

- They aren't going to move.

- They have to.

- What's it about?

- Senator.

- You have thought about it?

- You know what I see?

A bunch of party hacks

reacting to publicity.

I've talked to people about it.

What do you think of Jarmon?

A smooth character.

You think someone ought to take him on?

- Some bigtime Democrat.

- They're all afraid of him.

You're stuck, then.

Unless we find someone

who has something he believes in.

Whatever that means.

Someone to tell people

what's important.

Not that way he doesn't.

Not in any political campaign.

It doesn't have to work that way.

Don't tell me.

I watched my dad for 20 years.

It was no good?

Yes, it was good for him.

He got to be governor. What good it did

for anybody else, though, I don't know.

I'm not talking about him.

I mean someone

who can call his own shots.

This stuff you call politics...

...politics is bullshit!

I was wondering what it was.

I have to go home for about an hour.

Janice, did Nancy drop the car off?

Did she call?

I can drive you home.

I'll wait outside.

No, these have to be signed...

...then just give them to Donna.

You could go on filing lawsuits

in the sticks for 100 years...

...or take a year and lay out a real

position for yourself in this state.

Hi, kid.

Marvin Lucas,

this is my wife, Nancy.

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Jeremy Larner

Jeremy Larner (born March 20, 1937) is an author, poet, journalist and speechwriter. He won an Academy Award in 1972 for Best Original Screenplay, for writing The Candidate. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "The Candidate" STANDS4 LLC, 2022. Web. 29 May 2022. <>.

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