->''"Is it safe?"''

A 1976 political thriller film directed by John Schlesinger, based on the 1974 novel by Creator/WilliamGoldman.

Creator/DustinHoffman plays Thomas "Babe" Levy, a history graduate student and aspiring marathon runner. Babe seeks to follow in the footsteps of his father, a historian who committed suicide after being unjustly targeted by UsefulNotes/JosephMcCarthy. He receives a visit from his brother Henry (Roy Scheider), who, unbeknownst to Babe, is a government agent assigned to manage the fugitive Nazi Christian Szell (Creator/LaurenceOlivier). Babe soon becomes entangled in events, and must fight to save himself from Szell and his allies.

A very surrealistic sequel to the novel, ''Brothers'', was published several years later.

!!''Marathon Man'' provides examples of:
* TheAllegedCar: Dr. Szell's brother has trouble getting his old car to move at a green light. This leads to road rage, which leads to his death, which leads to Dr. Szell coming to New York....
* AlmostDeadGuy: A partial example, in that he can't manage to tell Babe anything, but everyone assumes he has.
* BaldOfEvil: [[DepravedDentist Guess]].
* BelatedHappyEnding: In ''Brothers'', it turns out [[spoiler: Scylla is still alive. He gets to reunite with Babe... if only for a moment]].
* BilingualBonus: The car chase scene in the beginning, with brilliant insults in German and Yiddish being exchanged.
* BookEnds: In the first and last shots of Babe, he's running by the Central Park Reservoir.
* CassandraTruth: [[spoiler:The old Jewish lady who recognizes Szell. Everybody in the area hearing her yell, "It's Szell!" thinks she's senile.]]
* CatchPhrase: "Is it safe?" for Dr. Szell.
* ChekhovsSkill: Guess what.
* ColdBloodedTorture: Dr. Szell famously exploits his knowledge of dentistry to do this to Babe.
* DepravedDentist: One of the most famous examples.
%% * DisposableWoman
%% * TheDogBitesBack
* EvenEvilHasStandards: One of Szell's henchmen turns his head away, terrified, when Szell tortures Babe with his dental instruments.
* FalseReassurance: Szell's ToThePain speech starts with him reassuring Babe that he won't be drilling into a cavity...because that's a dying nerve, and live, freshly cut nerves are infinitely more sensitive.
* FatalFlaw: Szell's greed and paranoia. [[spoiler: When Babe throws his diamonds in the reservoir, he ends up tumbling down the stairs after them, eventually impaling himself.]]
* FauxAffablyEvil: Szell is downright fatherly with Babe...in between torture sessions.
* GoryDiscretionShot: [[spoiler: When Szell drills into Babe's teeth.]]
* HoistByHisOwnPetard: Film only; [[spoiler:Szell falls down a staircase while chasing after the briefcase of diamonds and impales himself on his own blade]].
* HopeSpot: [[spoiler: One of Szell's former victims catches up to him, only to meet his retractable blade]].
%% * ImagineSpot
* InterrogatedForNothing: Babe gives every possible answer, several times, during his torture, but Szell is never satisfied.
* IronicEcho: "It's not safe."
* JewsLoveToArgue: A grouchy Jewish-American motorist engages in road rage with Szell's brother, which resulted in their deaths.
* KilledMidSentence: [[spoiler:Poor Doc]]
%% * MadDoctor
* MementoMacGuffin: The gun Babe's father used to shoot himself.
%% * TheMole: More than one.
* NaziGrandpa: Doctor Szell is kindly toward children who visit his dentist's office. He's less kindly to people who are in his care when he wants information from them.
* NeverTrustATitle: From the title, you might be expecting an inspirational sports film like ''Film/ChariotsOfFire'' . The marathon aspect barely factors into the movie, though, which is an espionage thriller from start to finish.
* NoCelebritiesWereHarmed: Szell is loosely based on Josef Mengele. Funny considering that Creator/LaurenceOlivier played a Nazi Hunter determined to catch Mengele in ''Film/TheBoysFromBrazil''.
* NothingUpMySleeve: Szell has a retractable blade up his sleeve.
* OhCrap: The {{Reveal}} that [[spoiler:Janeway is TheMole]] and Babe's escape has failed.
* PrecisionFStrike: "I couldn't give a fuck about your [[spoiler:Stab!]]"
%% * SceneryPorn
%% * ScrewTheMoneyIHaveRules
* SeanConneryIsAboutToShootYou: Dustin Hoffman is on [[http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41ZBY09ECFL.jpg this poster]].
* SignatureLine: "Is it safe?"
%% * StrappedToAnOperatingTable
* SuddenlySexuality: Toyed with. In the novel, there are early hints that [[spoiler: Scylla is dating Janeway]], and it later turns out that they are. No big deal is ever made of this. In the sequel ''Brothers'', [[spoiler: Scylla suddenly sleeps with a random woman, and only kisses a man while undercover during a spy mission]].
* TheToothHurts: Indeed it does.
* ThisIsADrill: The dental kind.
%% * ThwartedEscape
* TokenEvilTeammate: Melendez, the burglar Babe lets ransack his place in exchange for helping him with Szell's men.
%% * TookALevelInBadass: Babe at the end.
* ToThePain: "So, I'll just drill into a healthy tooth until I reach the pulp. That is unless, of course, you can tell me that it's safe."
** [[spoiler:"I'll let you keep as many as you can swallow."]]
%% * UngratefulBastard: [[TooDumbToLive Janeway]].
* WhiteHairBlackHeart: Szell's [[IronicNickname nickname]] is "The White Angel" because of his hair.
* YouWouldntShootMe: [[spoiler: Szell says this to Babe when the latter refuses to pull the trigger. Babe responds by chucking what's left of the diamond stash into the reservoir.]]