Wednesday, February 04, 2015


Two films of Dirty Harry: Magnum Force and The Enforcer


Once the matrix or the mould is in place, the formula constructed in the first film works all by itself but you have to vary the dressing of the composed salad bowl to make it attractive to the people.

In this second film the desire for the good cops to carry out their mission with as much power force as possible that Dirty Harry represents is realized by a secret police “sect” or “clan” that systematically kills everyone who is a criminal or an associate of such criminals knowing that justice would never manage to have them convicted and sentenced to anything. In front of that impotence, only one solution: let some secret police society take over.

The fun then is to see how Dirty Harry is going to cope with that group who he admires because of their shooting skills, who he must admire because they are cleaning up the criminal plate of San Francisco and yet he can only disapprove because they do not kill in action but they kill as vigilantes and hit men, which is cowardly since the targets have no say: they do not know anything is coming.

Then it is Dirty Harry versus that clan or clique and he has to eliminate them all. For once his partner will not be killed though he will be so badly treated and shot that he will decide that kind of job is not for him, which Dirty Harry will support whole-heartedly. In the end Dirty Harry will manage to clean up the police, which is admirable in itself since that police has to be rotten to the core to be that inefficient, not to say incompetent.

The action is brilliant though slightly too slow for present time taste. The special effects are rather primitive but the stunts are definitely OK.



This is the third episode of the saga. The mould was established two films ago and the first variations were introduced in the second episode. Now we have the third episode and the variation is clearly defined.

On one side the group of criminals are politically motivated, like some kind of revolutionary secret army that manages to steal a whole lot of state-of-the-art modern weaponry. On the other side the police who is completely impotent because of the political pressure that imposes women and at the same time a more civil or polite if not courteous way of dealing with criminals and crime. Ms Miranda again. Absolutely Shakespearian!

That of course goes against the grain of what Dirty Harry considers as good police work. The pseudo-revolutionary group kidnaps the mayor of San Francisco, then demands a couple of million and then a helicopter to transport them to the airport where the money will be waiting in a plane that would be ready to take off.

Dirty Harry is provided with a new partner after the killing of the one he had at the beginning and that new partner is a woman. She has to prove herself in the eyes of the famous Dirty Harry. She picks the challenge and she succeeds against all odds.

This time what makes the police inefficient is the political pressures they are suffering from, and that crashes them down. The mayor is saved in extremis by Dirty Harry and his partner, but the partner is killed and the mayor survives for sure but deeply shaken by the method used to liberate him. The main criminal detaining him is purely, truly and authentically blown into smithereens by a rocket launcher just hardly one meter over the head of the Mayor.

In this case it is your best friend who makes the police incompetent. The last touch of the film is the helicopter arriving and announcing the money has been collected and is waiting for “you” at the airport along with a plane on its loudspeakers just minutes if not seconds after the killing of the main criminal and the freeing of the mayor. It shows how far behind their own times these modernistic politicians can be.

Your worst enemies are always your best friends.


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