Unknown to the advertising world but with an unlimited amount on money Ted Quinn, Robert Mitchum, buys out the giant Porter & Stripe advertising agency. Quinn soon begins producing and peddling commercials on everything from deodorants drain cleaners and soap products to powered chocolate milk for children. It turns out that the real reason for Quinn's takeover of the agency is not to sell household goods but to sell politicians and even more sinister political ideas to an unsuspecting public.
Quinn slowly starts getting rid of the people working at the agency and begins replacing them with undercover political operatives. One of the people working for the agency as a commercial writer Sam Goldstein, Saul Rubinek, gets wind of what Quinn's plans really are which leads to his death. Sam's friend Philip Morgan, Lee Majors, who at first seemed to be ignorant of what was happening and thinking that Sam was a bid paranoid in his behavior changed his opinion after Sam's death when he comes across a audio tape that Sam recorded just minutes before he died. Marked to be eliminated because he knows too much Morgan is on the run from Quinn's goons throughout the rest of the movie.
Even though dated "Agency" still packs a punch about media manipulation via outside sources and is as good as the many movies made about the same subject since then, 1980. "Agency" is not a top flight Hollywood production with very bad lighting and occasional muffles and drops in the soundtrack but the film still grabs your attention and keeps you interested until the final scene.
Robert Mitchum gives his usual good and workman like performance as Ted Quinn like he did in the many films that he made in the last years of his acting career. Mitchum also gives the movie class and respectability just by being in it.
Lee Majors is surprisingly good with a much more in-depth acting role then what you usually saw him in on TV and in films back then.
Vallerie Perrine is more then adequate as Lee Majors' love interest in the film as well as the damsel in distress. Yet by far the biggest surprise in the movie was Saul Rubinek as Sam Goldstein. Sam who when you first saw him you would think that he's only in the film for comic relief instead became the most pivotal character in the movie.
What I liked most about Rubinek's performance is that the more he got closer to the truth the more his paranoia subsided. As Sam seemed to resigned himself to the fate that was in store for him. Which made Sam both believable and tragic at the same time and which is just the opposite of what you would expect from a part like his in a movie filled with surprises and paranoia like "Agency" to be like.