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Seattle cop Lon McQ investigates the murder of his best friend and the corruption within the police department.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
McQ
...
Kosterman
...
Lois
...
Myra
...
Toms
...
Pinky
...
J.C. (as Jim Watkins)
...
'Santiago'
...
Elaine
...
Rosey
...
Stan Boyle (as Bill Bryant)
...
Radical
Joe Tornatore ...
Freddy LaSalle
Dick Friel ...
Bob Mahoney
Richard Eastham ...
Walter Forrester
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Storyline

Police Lieutenant Lon McQ investigates the killing of his best friend and uncovers corrupt elements of the police department dealing in confiscated drugs. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The cop no one can stop. Even the cops. [DVD] See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

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Release Date:

6 February 1974 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Detektiv McQ  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Originally intended as a vehicle for Steve McQueen. It was heavily rewritten for John Wayne. See more »

Goofs

When McQ leaves the state building after the drug heist to follow the laundry truck, he runs to his Trans Am, opens the door, and is seen getting in head first before the cut away. Since John Wayne was 6'4" tall, it would have been impossible for him to get into a Trans Am that way, he would have to go right leg first, and then slide into the seat, tilting his body to the left as he does it, and twisting his neck out of the way until his butt hit, and slid across the seat, which is the way he is seen to do it when he comes out of Pinky's office into the alley. See more »

Quotes

Det. Lt. Lon McQ: [on the phone] Rosie, it's me. Did you get any more...
[Rosie hangs up]
Pinky: None of your snitches will help you now. They know you can't deal anymore.
Det. Lt. Lon McQ: The hell I can't!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Vic (2006) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Corruption in the Seattle PD
24 June 2006 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

I've always felt that John Wayne did his two police films McQ and Brannigan for a combination of reasons. Some of his last westerns before these like The Train Robbers and Cahill were really not up to standard and didn't get the reception at the box office Wayne films could usually expect. I also think those rugged western locations were becoming a problem healthwise. And of course Wayne was bowing to the public's new taste in heroes.

In McQ Wayne is investigating the death of his partner, the way Humphrey Bogart investigated the shooting death of Jerome Cowan in the Maltese Falcon. He has to go private to do it, he actually resigns from the Seattle PD and gets a private license, courtesy of a friend, David Huddleston. The investigation leads him to some surprising and not welcome conclusions.

John Wayne is always the great symbol of law and order and at first glance you would think this might not be a role for him, investigating crooked cops. But when you think about it in films like Tall in the Saddle and Rio Lobo he dealt with crooked sheriffs in the usual Wayne manner. In fact the whole point of Rio Lobo is Wayne putting his whole life on hold to find a couple of guys who betrayed him and their country during the Civil War. So McQ is definitely in line with both of those films.

In the supporting cast my favorite is Al Lettieri the drug kingpin of Seattle. Lettieri's death a few years after this film was a great loss to cinema. During the first half of the Seventies, ever since playing Virgil Sollozzo in The Godfather, Lettieri created some really outstanding villains and Manny Santiago here is one of them.

The ending will surprise you and its more Maltese Falcon than you would think.


18 of 22 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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