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

Director:

John Sturges

Writer:

Lawrence Roman
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Wayne ... McQ
Eddie Albert ... Kosterman
Diana Muldaur ... Lois
Colleen Dewhurst ... Myra
Clu Gulager ... Toms
David Huddleston ... Pinky
Julian Christopher ... J.C. (as Jim Watkins)
Al Lettieri ... Santiago
Julie Adams ... Elaine
Roger E. Mosley ... Rosey
William Bryant ... Stan Boyle
Richard Kelton ... Radical
Joe Tornatore ... LaSalle
Dick Friel 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:

Wayne on wheels! See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

6 February 1974 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Detektiv McQ See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$9,280,710, 31 December 1974
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

John Wayne's favorite director, John Ford died of cancer soon after filming ended. See more »

Goofs

When Myra is murdered, the hit man uses a revolver with a suppressor. A suppressor is effective only when all the gases expelled from the cartridge are channeled through it. Semi-automatics and automatics do this by design, because the chamber holding the cartridge is continuous with the barrel. Revolvers, however, have a small gap between the cylinder and the forcing cone of the barrel (the cylinder gap) as a necessity of their design (because the cylinder has to turn). Some gas expelled from the fired round escapes at this point, and this discharge of gas is enough to render the suppressor useless. (A possible exception to this would be a gas-seal revolver, but the hit man is clearly using a traditional revolver that shows a flash of gas escaping the cylinder gap with his first pull of the trigger.) See more »

Quotes

Pinky: [as McQ fills out paperwork to become a PI] Kosterman's gonna be awful mad.
McQ: [smiling broadly] Yeah...
See more »

Alternate Versions

The 1980s Warner Home Video VHS master was made from a 16mm TV print missing ten seconds of footage including during the car chase involving a laundry truck, an additional punch from Santiago when he confronts McQ in his office, and the introduction of Santiago's henchman before the final chase on the beach. The later video releases and DVD are uncut. See more »

Connections

References Bullitt (1968) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Enjoyable, if dated

John Wayne is Lieutenant Lon McQ (yes, that is his actual name) who finds himself in trouble. Several cops are murdered, by another cop who happens to be McQ's partner, who is then himself murdered. Thrown off the case he proceeds to investigate himself and uncovers a plot of corruption and formerly seized narcotics.

The film is quite dated by today's standards as the "lone cop" formula has all but been beaten into the ground. So to enjoy this film one must realize it is in fact from 1974 when cop flicks were as typical as teen comedies are now. Also despite having many similarities to 'Bullitt' and 'Dirty Harry' this is still an enjoyable action movie in its own right. It is not a classic since the story is a lot less inventive as the aforementioned films, but it is pretty cool to see John Wayne as a cop - he is no less tough then when sporting six shooters and riding a horse. Inevitably, the film would have prospered more if Wayne was a bit younger, but he is still good as the lead pretty much as he always has been in previous roles.

Also, there are several car chases - all are very different. From the typical driving down the road, to down alleyways, and even on a beach! Also for you car chase fans, this film supposedly contains the first ever cannon-roll car stunt on film. So, story department aside, the film has an edge that is quite fun and enjoyable. 7/10

Rated PG for violence


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