Dirty Harry

Dirty Harry

4.7 11
Director: Don Siegel

Cast: Clint Eastwood, Harry Guardino, Reni Santoni


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"You've got to ask yourself a question: 'do I feel lucky?' Well, do ya, punk?" Dirty Harry provoked a critical uproar in 1971 for its "fascist" message about the power of one, as it also elevated Clint Eastwood to superstar status through his most enduring screen persona. Harry Callahan (Eastwood, in a role meant for Frank Sinatra) is a sardonic, hard-workingSee more details below


"You've got to ask yourself a question: 'do I feel lucky?' Well, do ya, punk?" Dirty Harry provoked a critical uproar in 1971 for its "fascist" message about the power of one, as it also elevated Clint Eastwood to superstar status through his most enduring screen persona. Harry Callahan (Eastwood, in a role meant for Frank Sinatra) is a sardonic, hard-working San Francisco cop who can't finish his lunch without having to foil a bank robbery with his 44 Magnum, "the most powerful handgun in the world." When hippie-esque psycho Scorpio (Andy Robinson) goes on a killing spree, Harry and new partner Chico (Reni Santoni) are assigned to hunt him down, but not before the Mayor (John Vernon) and Lt. Bressler (Harry Guardino) admonish Callahan about his heavy-handed tactics. Racing against a deadline to save a kidnap victim from suffocating to death and unbothered by the niceties of Miranda rights and search warrants, Callahan brings in Scorpio, only to see him released on technicalities. "The law's crazy," opines Harry in disgust, before taking it upon himself to ensure that Scorpio doesn't kill again. Directed in violent and efficient fashion by Don Siegel, with a propulsive score by Lalo Schifrin, Dirty Harry was the fourth Siegel-Eastwood collaboration after Coogan's Bluff (1968), Two Mules for Sister Sara (1970), and The Beguiled (1970). Critics at the time strongly objected to the heroic image of a cop's violations of a suspect's Miranda rights, forcing Siegel and Eastwood to deny that they were right-wing reactionaries. All the same, Dirty Harry proved to be highly popular and spawned four sequels: Magnum Force (1973), The Enforcer (1976), Sudden Impact (1983), and The Dead Pool (1988).

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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ben Wolf
The police drama was spun on its head in 1971 by the violent, glib, and anarchic Dirty Harry, a Nixon-era hit that continues to influence films as varied as Lethal Weapon and Seven. Clint Eastwood, in one of his most iconic roles, stars as Harry Callahan, a rebellious member of the San Francisco Police Department assigned to pursue the gruesome Zodiac Killer. In his investigation of the long-haired serial killer, this hard-boiled hero stands by his individualistic code of honor, even when it comes violently in conflict with the modern legal system. Director Don Siegel transfers this detective out of 1940s noir to a realistic modern city, illuminating the urban nightmare in all its decayed perversity. There is a simplicity to Siegel's clean, direct style that belies the deep emotional core of the film; and the action scenes, while as exciting as they come, are staged on a human scale. Dirty Harry makes the perfect introduction to the work of one of America's best action directors, working with the screen giant who helped forge his legend.
All Movie Guide
"I know what you're thinking, punk...." So begins the most memorable speech from one of cinema's most memorable police officers, "Dirty" Harry Callahan, a role inextricably linked with Clint Eastwood. For fans of hard-boiled detective thrillers, this film has it all. It has so much, in fact, that it would be easy to write it off as gritty-cop-movie cliché, were it not for the fact that Dirty Harry practically invented the genre. If you've seen it before, it probably started here. Dirty Harry is definitely not a politically correct film, and some have decried it as right-wing propaganda. To be sure, criminals' rights are not something that Callahan has much use for, and whiny lawyers are the enemy of honest cops in Harry's world. Dirty Harry is a great example of how an actor can make a role his own; the part was originally offered to Frank Sinatra, then passed through the hands of John Wayne and Paul Newman, before Eastwood got hold of it. This was the fourth time that Eastwood had worked with director Don Siegel, and the pairing clearly works well, augmented here by a snazzy score by Lalo Schifrin. While the violence might be a little strong for some viewers, and others might have trouble rooting for an end-justifies-the-means kind of cop, Dirty Harry is one of the best cop movies, and one of the best movie cops, of all time.

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Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
Warner Home Video
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Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Clint Eastwood Harry Callahan
Harry Guardino Lt. Bressler
Reni Santoni Chico Sanchez
John Vernon Mayor
Andy Robinson Scorpio
John Larch Chief
Joy Carlin Communications Secretary
Tony Dario Police Sergeant
Diane Darnell Mayor's Secretary
Diana Davidson Swimmer
Vince Deadrick Man
Charles Dorsett Television Watcher
Al Dunlap Actor
George Fargo Homicide Detective
Joe Finnegan Men in Truck
Leslie Fong Actor
Lois Foraker Hot Mary
Max Gail Actor
John Garber Actor
David Gilliam Homosexual
Scott Hale Newsman
Robert H. Harris Actor
Raymond Johnson Actor
Richard Lawson Homosexual
Charles A. Murphy Actor
Kathleen O'Malley Woman
Angela Paton Homicide Detectives
Victor Paul Car Driver
Christopher Pray Tunnel Hoodlum
Ernest Robinson Robber (uncredited)
Kristoffer Tabori Actor
Melody Thomas Ann Mary Deacon, photographer
Dean Webber Actor
Craig Kelly Sgt. Reineke
John Tracy Actor
Ann Noland Actor
Stu Klitsner Actor
Eddie Garrett Policeman
John Mitchum DeGeorgio
Mae Mercer Mrs. Russell
Lyn Edgington Norma
Ruth Kobart Bus Driver
Woodrow Parfrey Mr. Jaffe
William Paterson Bannerman
Jo de Winter Miss Willis
Albert Popwell Bank Robber
Debra Scott Ann Mary Deacon (uncredited)
Josef Sommer Rothko
James Nolan Liquor Store Proprietor
Maurice Argent Sid Kleinman

Technical Credits
Don Siegel Director,Producer
Gordon Bau Makeup
Robert Daley Executive Producer
Robert de Vestel Set Decoration/Design
Rita M. Fink Screenwriter
Harry Julian Fink Original Story,Screenwriter
R.M. Fink Original Story
Dale Hennesy Art Director
Carl Pingitore Associate Producer,Editor
William Randall Sound/Sound Designer
Dean Riesner Screenwriter
Robert Rubin Asst. Director
Lalo Schifrin Score Composer
Bruce Surtees Cinematographer
Glenn Wright Costumes/Costume Designer

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