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Dirty Harry (1971)

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When a mad man calling himself 'the Scorpio Killer' menaces the city, tough as nails San Francisco Police Inspector Harry Callahan is assigned to track down and ferret out the crazed psychopath.

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(screenplay), (screenplay) (as R.M. Fink) | 3 more credits »
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1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Harry
... Bressler
... Chico
... The Mayor
... Killer (as Andy Robinson)
... Chief
... De Giorgio
Mae Mercer ... Mrs. Russell
Lyn Edgington ... Norma
... Bus Driver
... Mr. Jaffe
... Rothko
William Paterson ... Bannerman
... Liquor Proprietor
Maurice Argent ... Sid Kleinman (as Maurice S. Argent)
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Storyline

In the year 1971, San Francisco faces the terror of a maniac known as Scorpio- who snipes at innocent victims and demands ransom through notes left at the scene of the crime. Inspector Harry Callahan (known as Dirty Harry by his peers through his reputation handling of homicidal cases) is assigned to the case along with his newest partner Inspector Chico Gonzalez 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:

You don't assign him to murder cases, You just turn him loose. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

23 December 1971 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Dead Right  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$28,153,434, 31 December 1972
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut)

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

First of 2 Dirty Harry Movies where a "Novena" is mentioned. In this movie, while making plans to let a rooftop open to catch Scorpio, it was mentioned about having access to a Priest who performs novenas. In "The Enforcer" after Harry foils the plans of the heart attack victim to get free food - when he gets in the car, DiGeorgio can be heard saying he promised his wife he would be home early for supper to attend a novena. 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

Doctor: Sure, Harry. We can save the leg.
[takes out some scissors]
Harry Callahan: What are you going to do with those?
Doctor: Going to cut your pants off.
Harry Callahan: No. I'll take them off.
Doctor: It'll hurt.
Harry Callahan: $29.50, let it hurt.
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 »

Connections

Referenced in Lethal Weapon: Leo Getz Hitched (2018) See more »

Soundtracks

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

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Eastwood and his .44 Magnum blew away this original action classic!
7 May 1999 | by See all my reviews

In quoting these famous lines: "A man's gotta do what a man's gotta do!" and "Go ahead, make my day!". They meant something for Clint Eastwood, turning from cowboy to hit man with a surge of raging anger and ambition. The mountain terrains became an urban metropolis, thus putting the guy off the saddle and into the bloody streets of San Francisco. Which makes DIRTY HARRY an incredible classic not to be missed, as well as Eastwood's shift to the action genre where society is run by evil. Its continuous impact of the events take place with a tight grip and a smooth pace. This remains to be one of the most entertaining experiences in classic movie history. All it takes is a cop over the edge and "The Most Powerful Handgun In The World".

Violence was the key factor of DIRTY HARRY, and continues to be violent even today. We've never come to see staggering sights of brutalities before, but it was made possible to heighten the overall realism of a dark San Francisco infested with crime. Another was the quality of Clint Eastwood's character as "Harry Callahan", which was obviously a breakthrough for him at the time. He is best described as a smart-talking cop who hated criminals and broken the laws in serving time for the police. A very unique character he was, for going by his own personal business and taking the job "dirty". The best acheivement goes for the cinematography. It sure doesn't look pretty, but the effectiveness of the dark renders this haunting where no place is safe enough to run or hide. The real winner is Don Siegel, for presenting the perfect atmosphere to shoot a picture that already had a premise driven by fear and anxiety, anger and tension. He sure hasn't done anything like this before, and possibly no movie had since then. Otherwise, we would have still been seeing these one-dollar Western shows in the afternoon!

Watch DIRTY HARRY today and you can see how the styles of moviemaking has evolved slow and easy, but it still packs a powerful bullet or two. If you've seen this six times or only five, you knew how lucky Clint Eastwood got the perfect part for being an all-new action star. This is the one, and original cop movie. And remember, this is "In Tribute To The Police Officers Of San Francisco Who Gave Their Lives In The Line Of Duty"!


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