Dirty Harry Callahan returns in this third entry in the series which features the .44 Magnum-wielding San Francisco cop teamed up with a (gasp!) female partner (Tyne Daly) to take down a militant group called the People’s Revolutionary Strike Force, who end up kidnapping the Mayor and demanding a $5 million ransom. There are, of course, some great action sequences in this one, including an early liquor store holdup that gets Harry kicked out of Homicide and a later siege on Alcatraz Island, but The Enforcer might actually be the weakest of the Dirty Harry movies (yes, even weaker than The Dead Pool) — the film is witless and overly cruel in its violence and the main villain (DeVeren Bookwalter) is rather forgettable. Clint Eastwood‘s performance is problematic as well; he’s uncharacteristically lazy and unfocused in this one, seemingly distracted by all of the post production work that needs to be done on The Outlaw Josey Wales, which was going on at the same time. The film’s biggest asset is definitely Daly’s terrific performance as the lady cop who can more than hold her own against Eastwood — her character serves as something of a warmup for her later turn as the second half of the title role on Cagney & Lacey.
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