Magnum Force (1973) is the first sequel to the movie Dirty Harry starring Clint Eastwood. Dirty Harry, in some ways, is the apotheosis of the hard-edged cop living on the thin edge between recklessness and police brutality versus fantastic police work and intuitive detective skills. Many have tried to emulate Eastwood's panache in this type of role, but none have matched it. Eastwood's presence on film is what makes these movies worth watching.
Other than the above, Magnum Force is really a rather mediocre movie. Harry Callahan is part of an investigation of the deaths of some of San Francisco's most notorious villains. They turn out to be vigilante cops and Harry, while he makes some mistakes along the way, shows his skill in figuring out who the bad guys are as the plot unfolds. We also get a few gratuitous scenes, that don't advance the story, of Harry knocking off some bad guys in that gung-ho way of his - and enjoying, briefly, some female company. All in good fun.
Overall if you like Eastwood or those tough cop movies, then this is not a great movie, but it's entertaining.
After a pretty cut and dry ending to the original Dirty Harry, fans were surprised to see this sequel pop up a couple of years later and the ending for the first movie being that Harry had lost his faith in law enforcement. In this movie, the dark nights and mood were lightened up over the original and the foes were cops doing something that you'd almost think Dirty Harry would appreciate. Almost. After the opening shot of Dirty Harry's hand holding his trusty Magnum .44 … more
Dirty Harry is back and battling a group of cowboy cops brandishing magnums and taking out untouchable criminals. The dilemmas that the movie provide Harry get glossed over and could have led to some good arguments about the system.
This is the second of five "Dirty Harry" films in which Eastwood stars as a San Francisco police detective. By the time the last appeared (The Dead Pool in 1988), Eastwood had aged and times had changed but Callahan's non-negotiable values and unorthodox methods had remained essentially the same. In this film, directed by Ted Post with a screenplay co-authored by directors John Milius (e.g. Conan the Barbarian) and Michael Cimino (e.g. The Deer Hunter), the essential premise is that the same legal … more
This first sequel toDirty Harrywas written by a couple of strong voices, writer-directors Michael Cimino (The Deer Hunter) and John Milius (Farewell to the King). But that doesn't mean the film is particularly good. After Don Siegel's ferociously dark style in the first movie, Ted Post's blocky, television-ish direction inMagnum Forceis a huge letdown. The story doesn't win any prizes, either. Eastwood's San Francisco detective Harry Callahan (apparently having retrieved his badge after throwing it away at the end ofDirty Harry) takes on a vigilante squad within the city's police force. David Soul is pretty convincing as the major spokesman for these right-wing avengers. Eastwood, on the other hand, had already turned Callahan from fascinating outsider in Siegel's film to purveyor of tough-guy shtick in this one.--Tom Keogh