A hard but mediocre cop is assigned to escort a prostitute into custody from Las Vegas to Phoenix, so that she can testify in a mob trial. But a lot of people are literally betting that they won't make it into town alive.
San Francisco Police Inspector 'Dirty' Harry Callahan and his new partner, Early Smith have been temporarily reassigned from Homicide to Stakeout Duty. You Meanwhile, those of the city's criminals who manage to avoid punishment by the courts are nevertheless being killed by unknown assassins. Callahan begins to investigate the murders despite orders from his superior officer, Lieutenant Briggs. A man has to know his limitations...Written by
Bruce Janson <email@example.com>
One of two times actor Mitchell Ryan would work with Clint Eastwood. The other movie was High Plains Drifter (1973) released the same year. See more »
When the death squad reveals themselves to Callahan in his garage all he has to do is play along as he has no idea if they plan to kill him or not. Since Callahan is portrayed up to that point as being a shrewd police officer and had suggested to his partner what might happen that he would not have done so makes no sense. See more »
[at end of main titles]
This is a 44. Magnum, the most powerful handgun in the world, and it could blow your head clean off. Do you feel lucky?
[fires at the audience]
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The credits are played over a hand (presumably Harry's) holding a 44 Magnum against a red background. As such, this is the only Dirty Harry movie in which the opening credits are not played over San Francisco scenery. See more »
Ted Post directed and John Milius and Michael Cimino wrote this first sequel to Don Siegel's classic gritty police drama, Dirty Harry (1971). Magnum Force (1973) is not as near as effective or powerful as the first and original film, but this sequel is watchable and has its merits, too. Harry is now investigating strange killings of criminals, pimps, dirty politicians and others, so the killer is killing "bad guys" this time. Harry starts to investigate the cases, and he has his doubts about all this. Then the truth is revealed and also, unfortunately, spoilt in most of the reviews and comments I've read.
Harry has again his usual opponents, mostly his colleagues and superiors who don't accept his tough style. Harry wants to do justice, but by using his own ways and moral. If talking doesn't help, then the magnum .44 will. I don't think this or the first film are fascist, but realistic and honest, and extremely bleak depictions of world and society which is more or less collapsing because of its inhabitants. This film manages still to tell something about that, but the next sequel, The Enforcer, is pretty lame in comparison.
Magnum Force has pretty fat plot and many different characters and sub plots, without being too confusing. Towards the end, the film becomes perhaps too predictable and unbelievable, and I think the ending should have needed little tightening. Now it is little unnecessary shoot outs and nothing else. The film runs two hours, which is the longest running time in the "series", but still this manages to interest and even surprise, but if they had finished the film some 20 minutest earlier, this would be even more noteworthy film. Now it has nothing too important to offer during its finale, and so the finale becomes little unnecessary, in my opinion.
As an action film, this is pretty exciting and shot with talent. The action scenes are often fast and full of gunpowder and fire, so director Post can surely direct with skill. The film is pretty brutal and violent at times, and this again shows the fact that films this gritty and violent are not made in Hollywood nowadays, at least not too often. Magnum Force is much more easier and "positive" film than its predecessor, and that's why it hasn't got so many things to offer and give. This is pure action film where the first film was also many other things, too, like social commentary and talking about things many would not want to talk about. Magnum Force gets 7/10, but fortunately still has its positive things and even little bit of the power that made Dirty Harry so immortal.
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