Tags: Hollywood | clint eastwood | dirty harry | iconic | role

Clint Eastwood as 'Dirty Harry' Callahan: 5 Quotes About Iconic Role

By    |   Tuesday, 10 Mar 2015 04:50 PM

Spanning five movies, no role may be more associated with Clint Eastwood that that of "Dirty" Harry Callahan.

No list of the best quotes ever uttered in an American film is complete without a couple of entries from Eastwood's iconic police detective. "Go ahead, make my day" and "You've got to ask yourself one question: 'Do I feel lucky?' Well, do ya, punk?" have long become part of the American lexicon.

In addition to being quoted, many noted reviewers, and even Eastwood himself, also have some thoughts about the iconic 1970s and 1980s character.

1. "There was something there I felt some people missed. One critic said Dirty Harry shot the guy at the end with such glee that he enjoyed it. There was no glee in it at all, there was a sadness about it. Watch the film again and you'll see that."
– Eastwood,  to Rolling Stone in 1985


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2.
"'Dirty' is Harry's given epithet, and he carries it proudly enough. But he is really a knight in shining armor whose dirtiness is mostly rubbed on from the scummy world he keeps trying to wipe clean."
Roger Greenspun, The New York Times film critic, in his review of the 1971 film

3. "Don Siegel's 'Dirty Harry' is an apt example of a film with a vision that few people perceive beyond its violent, flamboyant surfaces. If director Siegel might be a bit uncomfortable with a close reading of his movie, he also might be pleased that the viewer doesn't see 'Dirty Harry' as just a movie of action, but also sees it as a movie of values."
Tony Macklin, freelance film critic and member of the Las Vegas Film Critics Society

4. "'The Enforcer' is the best of the 'Dirty Harry' movies at striking a balance between the action and the humor. Sometimes in the previous films, we felt uneasy laughing in between the bloodshed, but this time the movie's more thoughtfully constructed and paced. For the first time, we really get a sense of the human being behind Harry's facade, some of the scenes with Tyne Daly wouldn't work any other way. And Clint Eastwood, as always, is good at projecting Harry's loyalties and convictions in the fewest words possible." 
Roger Ebert, legendary film critic for the Chicago Sun-Times

5. "Only Clint could make a guy like Harry Callahan cool. A borderline fascist, with [substitute] teacher chic and hair so big it shows up on Google Earth, Callahan is a shoot first, ask questions never kinda guy, a bit of a pervert and a massive racist, to boot. But, as Eastwood deploys his laser-beam squint, massive gun and whispers his tough-guy dialogue, Harry becomes more than Dirty. He becomes an icon." 
Empire Magazine, in its list of "100 Greatest Movie Characters." "Dirty Harry" was ranked No. 23.

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Spanning five movies, no role may be more associated with Clint Eastwood that that of "Dirty" Harry Callahan. No list of the best quotes ever uttered in an American film is complete without a couple of entries from Eastwood's iconic police detective.
clint eastwood, dirty harry, iconic, role
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2015-50-10
Tuesday, 10 Mar 2015 04:50 PM
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