Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBB. USA, 1973. Warner Bros., The Malpaso Company. Story by John Milius, Screenplay by John Milius, Michael Cimino, based on original material by Harry Julian Fink, Rita M. Fink. Cinematography by Frank Stanley. Produced by Robert Daley. Music by Lalo Schifrin. Production Design by Jack T. Collis. Film Editing by Ferris Webster.
The popularity of Dirty Harry meant we needed more of the tough, gruff and unpopular detective, and rightly so. Clint Eastwood is still an indomitable screen presence as the cop who can’t be bothered to make himself appealing to those who doubt his methods, particularly when it turns out that there are vigilante cops traveling the streets and killing rich criminals who get away with their crimes. One violent set piece follows another in this exciting gun porn extravaganza, some of them aren’t even directly related to the plot, making it feel more like a collection of deleted scenes from the original than a movie of its own. That’s not actually a problem, though, since even without Don Siegel behind the camera, it’s still directed with strength, verve and style, and Eastwood smoothly keeps it under control.