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Klute is a 1971 film which tells the story of a prostitute who assists a detective in solving a mystery. It stars Jane Fonda, Donald Sutherland, Charles Cioffi, Dorothy Tristan, Vivian Nathan, and Roy Scheider. The movie was written by Andy Lewis and Dave Lewis and directed by Alan J. Pakula.

Klute was the first installment of what would informally come to be known as Pakula's "paranoia trilogy." The other two films in the trilogy are The Parallax View (1974) and All The President's Men (1976).

The film includes a cameo appearance by Warhol Superstar actress Candy Darling in the disco scene, and another by future All in the Family costar Jean Stapleton. The music was composed by Michael Small. Klute is also one of popular actor Sylvester Stallone's first film roles - he has a small part as an extra dancer in a club scene.

Plot summary

The film begins with the disappearance of Pennsylvaniamarker executive Tom Gruneman, whose family hires a friend, police officer John Klute (Sutherland), as a private investigator to look for him. A typewritten obscene letter in Gruneman's desk leads Klute to Bree Daniels (Fonda), a call girl in New York Citymarker to whom the letter was addressed.

The relatively provincial Klute becomes drawn into Bree's seedy world, discovers several of Bree's fellow call-girls have been murdered by a "john", and that she was nearly killed by the same man, presumably Gruneman. After an uneasy start, the two work together to track down the killer. Along the way, Klute and cynical city slicker Bree develop an unlikely romance as he becomes protective of her and shows her affection to which she is unaccustomed.


The film won the Academy Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role (Jane Fonda) and was nominated for Best Writing, Story and Screenplay Based on Factual Material or Material Not Previously Published or Produced.

Main cast

Actor Role
Jane Fonda Bree Daniels
Donald Sutherland John Klute
Charles Cioffi Peter Cable
Roy Scheider Frank Ligourin
Dorothy Tristan Arlyn Page
Rita Gam Trina
Nathan George Trask
Vivian Nathan Psychiatrist

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