Magnum Force (1973) - full transcript

San Francisco Police Inspector 'Dirty' Harry Callahan and his new partner, Early Smith have been temporarily reassigned from Homicide to Stakeout Duty. You 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 being the orders of his superior officer, Lieutenant Briggs. A man has to know his limitations...

Go a little faster,
I'm on their side.

- Roll down your window.
- What? Are you out of your mind?

- I've never been wrong yet, have I?
- I don't know why I'm doing this.

- Say, excuse me. Could you help us out?
- What do you want?

Maybe you could help us,
we seem to be lost.

We were looking for the entrance to
San Quentin. You know where that is?

It's back there. Don't
you see too good?

Yeah, I see fine. I just wanted to know
whether you knew where San Quentin was.

And you do, don't you, asshole.

Get you yet, you son of a bitch.

You always gotta do things
your way, don't you?

No wonder Briggs
stays on your tail.

You do things someone else's way and
you take your life in your own hands.

That son of a bitch Guzman!

He hasn't gone out for
almost 24 hours now.

Hey, one of our
guys took a spill.

It's Charlie McCoy!
Seems to be okay.

Let me take a look.

Yeah, he's okay.

There he is.

So, all you've got to do is
sit around all day, Guzman?

This coke is out of sight!

Oh, Guzman gets the best, baby.

Oh, you bitch. Don't spill it.

That stuff's worth
$900 an ounce.

You better not spill it.

Don't get so uptight.

Nobody says "don't" to me.
You understand? Nobody.

I never touch the stuff.

You want to put that
over there now?

Take over for me, will you, Ed?

Damn, I wish something
would happen.

Take it easy.

That's what stakeouts are all about.

No, please! No!


- Just what the hell is going on?
- Somebody killed a cop.

Folks, there's been a little trouble here.
Everyone stand back.

Please, ma'am, move back.

There's been some trouble.

What happened?

Everything seems to
be all right, folks.

What's going on?

Move it, people.

Please, sir, stand back.

Yes, sir.

Yes, sir.

No, sir. We won't let
anything out to the press.

Yes, sir.

You endangered an entire investigation
by trying to push something.

Not to mention your own lives.

You blew the whole
Palancio stakeout.

Instead of keeping him under
surveillance as I told you to...

you had to harass him. What do
you have to say about that?

What do I tell Avery? What?

You tell him it's not Palancio.
You tell him it's a traffic cop.

A cop?

That's right.

A traffic cop. Are you
out of your mind?

Do you expect me to believe
that a traffic cop...

is killing off all the top
criminals in the city? Who?

It's Charlie McCoy.

He's ready for the rubber gun squad.
He even tried to kill himself.

Charlie McCoy.

Guzman was hit today.

A cop was killed. It
was Charlie McCoy.

- McCoy?
- Yes, Charlie McCoy.

The only reason I don't bust you
into the bag this minute...

is I know the two of you
were close friends.

I was just about to call his wife.
Or you can, if you want to.

I know he had kids.


- Who reported it?
- Davis.


What happened to the
DiGiorgio stake-out team?

It was an accidental coincidence. Davis
happened to be going by, it happens.

McCoy was already dead
when he got there.

Any witnesses?


- I'll make that call.
- Go ahead.

Harry, if it means anything coming
from me, I'm sorry about Charlie.

But it's Palancio, believe me.

I'll have a warrant in 48 hours.
You can pick him up.

He's all yours.

Well, thank you for
coming, Harry.

You sure you have to leave?

I won't have any place to go
for a sit-down dinner anymore.

I never really did like
it here very much.

I always liked the
change of seasons.

I'm going to take him home.
It's time.

It's time he went home.

Come on, kids, let's
get in the car.

It was nice of that young man
to help us with the children.

Goodbye, Harry.
We'll all miss you.

'Bye, doll.

Take them to the passenger
terminal, please.

It was nice of you to come out.
You didn't have to do that.

If I'd have been there sooner,
he might still be alive.

He didn't deserve
to get it that way.

If there's anything I can do...

I feel responsible somehow.

The next shooter is Callahan.
Davis on deck.

You sure shot the pants off of
everybody with that score, Harry.

I've never seen you smoother.

By the way, I personally
want to tell you...

how sorry I am about what
happened to Charlie.

What I can't figure out, Frank, is how
that kid, Davis, got in there first.

You guys were right
across the street.

I don't have a goddamned idea, Harry.
The kid came out of nowhere.

We were in that garage
before you could spit.

Maybe I'm slowing down in my old
age or something, I don't know.

I want to be the first to congratulate you
on what I think will be the winning score.

You shaded me by seven points.

The only person now who
has a chance is Davis.

Shoot 'em up!

I think the kid beat you, Harry.

It happens.

Harry, he edged you
by four points.

That evens it up on
the overall champion.

You have your choice
in the shoot-off.

Bull's eye or combat?



5:46 seconds. Score, perfect.

Good luck, sir.

A good guy!

That last one was a good guy!

5:36 seconds. But I'm sorry,
Harry, you hit a good guy.

You had a bad break. I
really don't deserve it.

You won, didn't you?

- I guess, but...
- That's all that matters.

You mind if I try that one?

Chester, how about six?

Not bad. I seem to have
lost the last one.

You get used to it.

I can see how you
would, at that.

You said five minutes and I've
been waiting for a half an hour.

Don't you ever get hungry?

- It just didn't seem like a half hour.
- Yeah, well it has been.

I went over to my butcher's
yesterday and picked up some veal.

Pops is really an artist, man. I could
watch that man cut meat all day long.

Why don't you come
home with me and...

My wife's a good cook. Have
a little dinner with us.

No, thanks. I just saw something
that killed my appetite.

We'll catch those animals with their pants
down. I was going to call you at home.

We got our search warrants
and multiple charges.

We're going to make a city-wide
raid tomorrow morning.

Palancio is yours. Just don't
take him out head-first, Harry.

I think you'll find what I want to show
you in ballistics very interesting.

You'll find more leads than you can
shake a stick at tomorrow morning.

- Good morning, Harry. Sir.
- Walter.

Do you mind excusing
us for a few minutes?


There's only two.

- I wonder what happened to the others.
- Federal boys have them.


Take a look.

Close, real close.

But there's still a lot of
lines that don't match up.

All this proves is that
these two bullets...

came from barrels with a similar
twist and width of rifling.

You don't think it would
stand up as evidence?

As it is, no.

But I'll have a full comparison
report made, no problem.

You're probably right. Besides,
it isn't necessary yet.

What do you mean, "yet"?

Where'd you get that slug?

I'd just as soon not say
for the time being.

Don't play games on this.

Whose side are you on anyway?

It's just a wild shot
and I'm probably wrong.

I'd like to handle
it my own way.

By the way, I'd like to have Davis and
Sweet as my back-up squad tomorrow.

They're just rookies
for Christ's sake.

You drum up somebody in the department
who can shoot as well and I'll use them.

Goddamn it, there isn't
supposed to be any shooting.

Besides, they don't have the
experience yet for a job like this.

How the hell's a man supposed to get
experience if nobody gives him a chance?

And Davis is the new
pistol champion.

Suppose they panic
and start shooting?

Nothing wrong with shooting, as
long as the right people get shot.

- Let him know who you are and keep cool.
- Okay.

I want you to keep an
eye on Davis and Sweet.

What for?

Just do it, will you?

All right.

- You all set?
- All set.

We'll take off in three cars.

Davis and Sweet will make the arrest.
Early will cover.

I'll be on the back at the pier in
case anybody makes a break for it.

If there'll be trouble,
that's where it'll start.

We're holding the other squads back
until you've made your arrest.

Yours is the most important, it'll be
the first. We don't want any foul-ups.

- Right?
- Right.

I'd never walk up to a door with
Harry, too many people don't like him.

Thanks. I needed that.

- You boys ready?
- Yes, sir.

- Thank you for requesting us.
- Sir, we won't let you down.

Well, I'm depending on that.



Who is this?

What was that, Nickie?

Somebody said we'll be hit in two minutes.
They'll be dressed like cops.

Did it sound like
anybody you know?

No, I couldn't tell.

Ed, Chuck...

get over to the windows.

I got the water side.

I'll take the street side.

If they are cops, this
could be a set-up.

After the holes they put in Ricca
you want me to wait and see?

If they're cops,
they'll have papers.

Car coming, Frank.

There's a big guy out there.

- He got a uniform on?
- No.

He ain't no cop. Cops always
come in the front door.

Another car.

Why didn't they come in
squad cars if they're cops?

That big guy's working himself
around by those containers.

He's got a gun out.

Two uniforms in it.

That ain't no cop's gun, Frank.

There's a cop in uniform
coming up to the door.

We aren't open.
Come back tomorrow.

Police officers, we'd like
to ask you some questions.

Yeah, I'm just a watchman.
Nobody's here.

We're looking for Mr.
Frank Palancio.

Would you open the door? We
have a warrant for his arrest.

I said nobody's
here, goddamn it!

We have warrants for a
search of the premises.

Serve them!

They got Sweet! Send some help!

Cease firing.

Throw your weapons out and come out
with your hands behind your heads.

- Bullshit!
- Fuck you!

You sure you don't want a local for this?
Takes about seven stitches.

No, thanks.

Okay, it's your ass.

My head, cut's on my head.

Why does everybody suddenly
become a comedian in here?

Does he have to stay in here?

No, I could stop and let the man's
brains run out all over his shoes.

Rogers, I don't need to have a doctor
display that kind of attitude.

A police officer is dead.


I got those warrants for a search
of the premises, Callahan...

not for you to become judge,
jury and executioner.

It was supposed to
be a simple arrest.

Arresting a killer like
Palancio isn't always simple.

People are guilty
until proven...

I mean...

Goddamn it, you
know what I mean.

The city's on the edge of the
worst violence in its history...

and you have to start
full-scale military operations.

I didn't start shooting at anyone who
didn't start shooting at me first.

Each time you pull out that gun, my
paperwork backs up for three months.

The chief and I have already
conferred on this matter.

A full investigation
is warranted here.

What about a dead cop?

- I warned you against taking them.
- Sweet was killed with the first shot.

Besides they were tipped off.
They knew we were coming, Briggs.

How? Don't hand me that crap.

They knew we were coming. After 200
arrests, I know the difference.

If I have my way, Callahan, you won't
make another arrest as long as you live.

Is that all, Lieutenant?

No, that's not all.

I want that slug you showed me.

I ran that through ballistics, it was
nothing. The rifling was totally different.

It's still State's evidence.
I want it anyway.

Eat it.

Look, Harry, if it means anything, I think
you got the wrong end of the stick.

- You do?
- Yeah.

What did they find when
they got in there?

Nothing. Palancio was as clean
as he could possibly be.

They knew we were coming, Harry.

Why do you figure
they opened up on us?

They must've thought it was
a set-up like the others.

- It was.
- No.

It was a set-up, Early.

What I'll lay on you seems so far-fetched,
I can't even believe it myself.

I gave up being surprised
working with you anyway.

Would you be surprised
if I told you...

a bunch of rookie cops were the ones
who were doing all the killing?

See this?

I gave Briggs a phony
for the time being.

This is a bullet I took
out of the target range.

It came from Davis' gun.

It matches up with the one taken
out of Charlie McCoy's body.

Davis? That's insane.

Maybe so, but somebody tipped-off
Palancio that we were coming.

Wanting me killed or
Palancio or hopefully both.

Yeah, but Sweet died today.

Sweet was sacrificed.

What's more important if I'm
right, I'll be sacrificed.

They've gotta figure I told you,
which means you'll be sacrificed.


If anything happens to me, I want
you to give that to Lt. Briggs.


What happens if
they get us both?

Then they win.

It's not hard to understand how this
could happen, the way things are.

As incredible as it seems, there may be a
sub-organization within the police force.

Sort of a death squad like they
had in Brazil some years back.


Some nights I wake up, wonder where
the hell the world's going to.

I want you to take care of
yourself, you understand?



Jesus, what happened
to your face?

Nothing, just a few stitches.

I was going to the market, how
about if I bring back a few beers?

Good, I could use a
beer right about now.

I've got your key, so
I'll get your mail, too.

All right, baby.

Keep it warm.

Do you have any idea how hard
it is to prosecute a cop?

You heroes have killed a
dozen people this week.

What are you gonna do next week?

Kill a dozen more.

Is that what you guys are
all about, being heroes?

All our heroes are dead.

We are the first generation...

that's learned to fight.

We're simply ridding society of
killers that would be caught...

and sentenced anyway if our
courts worked properly.

We began with the criminals
that the people know...

so that our actions
would be understood.

It's not just a question of
whether or not to use violence.

There simply is no
other way, Inspector.

You of all people...

should understand that.

Either you're for us
or you're against us.

I'm afraid you've misjudged me.

- Hi, Sunny.
- Hi, Sue.

No, no!

Harry, what are you doing?

Hey, what's going on down here?

I'm taking the mailbox apart,
what does it look like?

- You people live here, don't you?
- Yeah.

What are you doing to the mailbox?
Did you lose you key?

Why don't you mind your
own goddamn business.

That's my mailbox, too. Don't
you get smart with me!

Tampering with the mail
is a federal offense.

I'm calling the police.

I am the police.


The cop that lives upstairs?

What's that?

Plastic explosive.

A bomb?

That's right.

If you'd bothered me any more,
we'd all be stuck to the ceiling.

- Do you want to hold it?
- No. I don't want to get involved.

Go to your apartment and stay there.
Don't open for anybody.

Homicide, Lt. Briggs,
Inspector Callahan calling.

Callahan, where are you?

Look, Briggs, I just found
a bomb in my mailbox.

I want you to get a man over
to Early's house right away.


I've got a bomb right here!

Now get a man over to
Early's, you hear me?


Stay right where you are.
I'll be down there myself.

Don't move.


Come on in.

I don't like looking
down one of those.

Where's the bomb?

Right on the dresser.

All right. Let's
get out of here.

Avery will want to see this.

You mind driving? I want to take
a closer look at this thing.

This thing could be activated
by your mailbox key.

Or by a timer.

Turn right, here.

Get on the freeway.

The freeway?

You got a new route to
city hall, Lieutenant?

Your gun's out of its holster, Briggs.
First time?

You know you're not
going to city hall.

The only way you're going
anywhere is in a rubber bag.

Let me have your gun.

Now the shells.

Three. You always carry three.

Throw them out the window.

How do you figure on
pulling this off, Briggs?

I run the investigation, with your
record, I can make anything stick.

What I can't understand is,
why you of all people?

A hundred years ago in this city,
people did the same thing.

History justified the
vigilantes, we're no different.

Anyone who threatens the security
of the people will be executed.

- Evil for evil, Harry. Retribution.
- That's just fine.

But how does murder fit in?

When police start becoming
their own executioners...

where's it gonna end, Briggs?

Pretty soon, you'll start
executing people for jaywalking.

And executing people for
traffic violations.

Then you end up executing your neighbor
'cause his dog pisses on your lawn.

There isn't one man we've killed that
didn't deserve what was coming to him.

Yes, there is. Charlie McCoy.

What would you have done?

I'd have upheld the law.

What the hell do you
know about the law?

You're a great cop, Harry.

You had a chance to join the team, but
you'd rather stick to the system.

Briggs, I hate the goddamn system.
But until someone comes along...

with some changes that make
sense, I'll stick with it.

You're about to become extinct.

Get off at the next exit.



Briggs was right. You guys
don't have enough experience.

Just hold it right
there, Callahan.

No tricks.

Your organization's
through, Briggs.

There's a lot more where
they came from, believe me.

Move out of the way. Move it!

Uphold the law.

You just killed three
police officers, Harry.

And the only reason I'm
not gonna kill you...

is because I'm gonna prosecute
you with your own system.

It'll be my word against yours.

And who's gonna believe you?

You're a killer, Harry.
A maniac!

A man's got to know
his limitations.