7.2/10
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187 user 75 critic

Magnum Force (1973)

San Francisco Inspector "Dirty" Harry Callahan (Clint Eastwood) is on the trail of vigilante Police Officers who are not above going beyond the law to kill the city's undesirables.

Director:

Ted Post

Writers:

Harry Julian Fink (original material), Rita M. Fink (original material) (as R.M. Fink) | 3 more credits »
2 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Clint Eastwood ... Harry Callahan
Hal Holbrook ... Lt. Briggs
Mitchell Ryan ... Charlie McCoy
David Soul ... Davis
Tim Matheson ... Sweet
Kip Niven ... Astrachan
Robert Urich ... Grimes
Felton Perry ... Early Smith
Maurice Argent Maurice Argent ... Nat Weinstein
Margaret Avery ... Prostitute
Richard Devon ... Ricca
Tony Giorgio ... Palancio
Jack Kosslyn ... Walter
Bob March Bob March ... Estabrook
Bob McClurg Bob McClurg ... Cab Driver
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Storyline

San Francisco Police Inspector "Dirty" Harry Callahan (Clint Eastwood) and his new partner, Earlington "Early" Smith (Felton Perry) have been temporarily reassigned from Homicide to Stakeout Duty. 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 Neil Briggs (Hal Holbrook). A man has to know his limitations. Written by Bruce Janson <bruce@cs.su.oz.au>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Clint Eastwood is Dirty Harry in Magnum Force See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 December 1973 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Vigilance See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$39,768,000

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$39,768,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Theatrical movie debut of Kip Niven (Red Astrachan). See more »

Goofs

The condition of the rear door on the Ford sedan when Harry makes a U-turn. The door is damaged when Harry sideswipes a stack of railroad ties, and Lt. Briggs falls out of the car. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Harry Callahan: [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]
See more »

Crazy Credits

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 »

Alternate Versions

Magnum Force's original English Mono track is quite elusive. It is only on early out-of-print laserdisc and VHS releases. Many of these releases are either cut down or sped up to under 2 hours as well. Some later VHS and Laserdisc releases had "reprocessed" stereo, which were voices and sound effects panned either left or right under a stereo score. As of 2019, every US DVD, Blu-Ray, and digital release of Magnum Force uses the remastered 5.1 surround sound track with new sound effects and other minor (and some major) changes. Some of the other audio tracks of the movie in different languages (Italian, Spanish, French, etc) have the mono mix, but none of the English tracks do. See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Year Of The Gun
15 December 2008 | by LechuguillaSee all my reviews

It's all about the man, his politics, and his methods. Harry Callahan (Clint Eastwood) is a tough, no-nonsense cop. In this second "Dirty Harry" movie, Callahan is on the trail of a ruthless vigilante gang. The story starts off well enough, with a fair amount of suspense. As the plot moves along, however, it becomes less tight and more drawn out. Suspense fizzles. And the puzzle solution is revealed too soon.

The film conveys an angry tone, especially directed at the American court system. The idea is that the "law" doesn't really protect innocent people. So we need loners like Dirty Harry to hunt down the bad guys. The film glorifies guns, a symbol of "rough justice". As such, Harry is very much a modern representative of the Old West cowboy gunslinger. Right is right; wrong is wrong; there's no in-between. I hate that overly simplistic mentality.

Color cinematography is fine; there's some good overhead camera shots. Many scenes take place on city streets. Way too much time is spent on car chases. Acting is acceptable. I especially liked the performance of the always reliable Hal Holbrook.

The original "Dirty Harry" was quite suspenseful. By contrast, "Magnum Force" is much less so. Still, it's not a bad movie, if you don't mind lots of car chases and the sounds of screeching tires, and if you adhere to a philosophy that a lone tough-guy cop can protect us, with the help of his trusty "44-Magnum", "the most powerful handgun in the world".


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