Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Dirty Harry investigates murders of crooks

Magnum Force (1974)
Starring: Clint Eastwood, Hal Holbrook, and David Soul
Director: Ted Post
Rating: Six of Ten

When San Francisco's biggest crime figures fall victim to a series of execution-style hits, homicide detective Harry Callahan (Eastwood) first believes that someone must be impersonating police officers to get as close to the victims as they are, but his boss, Lt. Briggs (Holbrook) is convinced that the murders the result of a typical gangster power-struggle. As Callahan investigates, he uncovers a frightening possiblity--that maybe the "fake cop" is a real cop, and that a secret death squad exists within the SFPD.

"Magnum Force" is a somewhat dissapointing follow-up to "Dirty Harry",and it's possibly the weakest of the series. The movie seems to drag on and on, in part due to some exceptionally dull cinematagraphy, and a lack of story focus until the third act, and a near-total lack of humor throughout. (The exception being an encounter totally unrelated to the rest of the movie, except to establish Harry's renegade ways, when Harry prevents a plane from bing hijacked,)

The film is still superior to most cop dramas out there--mostly thanks to its great cast--but it's a weak link in the "Dirty Harry" cycle.

1 comment:

  1. I love that last scene with holbrook. Very slick. The killers reminded me of radical moslems with an agenda, a la Nadal Hasan. The enemy within. They got what was was coming to them.