5 Movie CIA Agents Who You Could Never Really Trust
The Central Intelligence Agency doesn't consider "trustworthiness" to be among the key attributes necessary for admission. That's probably because in order to be a spy, you have to be able to lie to everyone around you, including people that are close loved ones. Here are five CIA agents from the movies who probably won't be winning any trustworthiness awards any time soon.
Carson Dyle/Hamilton Bartholomew, "Charade"
The 1963 romantic thriller/comedy "Charade" is chock full of people you can't trust. The people who aren't trying outright to intimidate or murder Audrey Hepburn are harboring their own secret agendas. And unfortunately for Ms. Hepburn (and this is a spoiler alert for "Charade"), that includes CIA administrator Hamilton Bartholomew, who turns out to be the big bad guy behind all the killing and mayhem. And that might not even be his real name!
Anyone in the CIA who is not Robert Redford, "Three Days of the Condor"
Robert Redford's character in "Three Days of the Condor" has a pretty sweet job: He's a "reader," who pours over cheap paperbacks, pulp novels, and comic strips for secret messages and information related to global espionage. But his cushy position in the Agency is ruined after a series of murders, and he discovers that even his boss in the CIA is involved in a plot to kill him.
Maxwell Danforth, "The Osterman Weekend"
Burt Lancaster's turn as the Director of the CIA in "The Osterman Weekend" isn't a starring role. He's more of a "villain who wasn't there," who sets the plot in motion and occasionally intervenes but isn't a fixture in the actual plot of the movie. But don't forget that he is a devious son of a bitch, having one of his own agents' wife killed for mysterious reasons.
Jack Byrnes, "Meet the Parents"
Just because someone retires from the CIA doesn't mean they lose their proclivity for secret machinations. That's what Ben Stiller's character in "Meet the Parents" finds out about Robert De Niro's Jack, the father of his would-be bride. Meeting your girlfriend's parents is awkward enough no matter the circumstances, but when her father is a former CIA agent known as a "human lie-detector," that's even worse.
Clay Shaw, "JFK"
One reason it's difficult to trust CIA operatives is that you often won't know for sure that they're even with the CIA until it's too late. That's the case with the (real-life) figure in the JFK assassination conspiracy theory posited in Oliver Stone's "JFK." Played by Tommy Lee Jones, Shaw is the person placed on trial for the murder of President Kennedy, and he disavows all connection with the CIA. Only after the trial (and his acquittal) is it revealed that he had indeed worked for the CIA. Oh well, better luck next time.