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Dirty Harry (1971)

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2:53 | Trailer
When a madman calling himself "the Scorpio Killer" menaces the city, tough as nails San Francisco Police Inspector "Dirty" Harry Callahan is assigned to track down and ferret out the crazed psychopath.

Director:

Don Siegel

Writers:

Harry Julian Fink (screenplay), Rita M. Fink (screenplay) (as R.M. Fink) | 3 more credits »
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832 ( 155)
2 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Clint Eastwood ... Harry
Harry Guardino ... Bressler
Reni Santoni ... Chico
John Vernon ... The Mayor
Andrew Robinson ... Killer (as Andy Robinson)
John Larch ... Chief
John Mitchum ... De Giorgio
Mae Mercer Mae Mercer ... Mrs. Russell
Lyn Edgington Lyn Edgington ... Norma
Ruth Kobart ... Bus Driver
Woodrow Parfrey ... Mr. Jaffe
Josef Sommer ... Rothko
William Paterson William Paterson ... Bannerman
James Nolan ... Liquor Proprietor
Maurice Argent Maurice Argent ... Sid Kleinman (as Maurice S. Argent)
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Storyline

In 1971, San Francisco faces the terror of a maniac known as the "Scorpio Killer" (Andrew Robinson), who snipes at innocent victims and demands ransom through notes left at the scene of the crime. Inspector "Dirty" Harry Callahan (Clint Eastwood) is assigned to the case along with his newest partner Inspector Chico Gonzalez (Reni Santoni) to track down Scorpio and stop him. Using humiliation and cat-and-mouse type of games against Callahan, Scorpio is put to the test with the cop with a dirty attitude. Written by commanderblue

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

With his .44 Magnum, the most powerful handgun in the world, Dirty Harry wipes out crime to hell. See more »

Genres:

Action | Crime | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

23 December 1971 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Dead Right See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$35,976,000

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$35,976,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

The Malpaso Company See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The Hutchinson Company quarry, where the final shoot-out took place, was located just south of the Larkspur exit off of U.S. Highway 101. It was demolished in the mid 1980s. See more »

Goofs

Callahan finds the note at the beginning stuck on the prong of an antenna. While the note is being reviewed in the Mayor's office, there's no visible hole made by the prong. See more »

Quotes

Big Black Man: [Big Black has just been given a wad of cash by Scorpio] You want to go all the way?
The Killer: Every penny's worth.
Big Black Man: Relax. Take it easy. It's gonna be all right.
[pulls on a pair of leather gloves and methodically beats Scorpio into a bloody pulp]
Big Black Man: You sure you want the rest of it?
The Killer: Every penny's worth, you black son of a bitch!
Big Black Man: [kicks Scorpio hard] This one's on the house!
[flattens him with one last punch and walks away]
See more »

Crazy Credits

During the opening credits, the word "Dirty" in the title is in brown as opposed to the rest of the credits' yellow. See more »

Alternate Versions

As with all of the "Dirty Harry"-films this one also had some cuts for violent content in the initial Swedish release. Among trimmed scenes were Scorpio pulling Harry's knife out of his leg, and the scene where Scorpio pays a man to beat him up, which was cut by almost 40 seconds. See more »

Connections

References The Zodiac Killer (1971) See more »

Soundtracks

Old MacDonald Had a Farm
(uncredited)
Written by Traditional
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
I feel awkward about liking this movie. But it's still an inimitable classic.
17 March 2019 | by GiraffeDoorSee all my reviews

For me this is that movie that you love when you're young but as you get older you see the dark side to it.

I mean...it's not exactly Masha and the Bear even on a superficial level but you know what I mean.

As an action movie, this is just timeless. It has a gentle, yet uncompromising tone that immediately puts you in the mindset that you are in an unforgiving, violent world. It's clearly going for the X rating. It's not about elegance, it's just about being honest.

There's something folkloric in this tale of hunter and hunted where it's hard to tell who is the more brutal. That was indeed meant to be the gimmick: "two killers on the loose, one carries a badge".

It's a vivid movie about sadism and unapologetic brutality. Where there is only kill or let others get killed. Harry is a delicious character and Eastwood's cool portrayal, always seeming to be one jolt away from going nuts is captivating.

But in recent years I've had new feelings. Harry seems to personify that kind of cop who hates the 4th amendment, who sees themselves as the only barrier between the innocent and monsters and is devoted to protecting without a thought for who will protect the public from him. It's that counter-counter-cultural thinking wear one wants more power to law enforcement not less. I know the title suggests that these are Harry's negative traits but when watching, these are why we fall in love with him as a character. It's kind of a double bluff. Especially when Harry's violation of protocol is seemingly respesented as necessary.

Scorpio is amazing. He is played with maniacal relish that complements the stony Harry like how the Joker does for batman. But I would say he's scarier. We don't get the comic fantasy as a barrier.

I might be overthinking this movie but it is a fascinating rumination on grey morality and how it's not always easy to tell who to root for. even when you think you've realised that the official heroes aren't always good.

it's a difficult movie to interalize and ultimately, that's why it's brilliant.

There's never been a movie quite like it.


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