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The Dead Pool

movie reviewmovie reviewmovie review out of 4

All-Reviews.com Movie Review: The Dead Pool

Starring: Clint Eastwood, Patricia Clarkson
Director: Buddy Van Horn
Rated: R
RunTime: 91 Minutes
Release Date: July 1988
Genres: Action, Suspense


*Also starring: Evan C. Kim, Liam Neeson, David Hunt, Michael Currie, Jim Carrey, Michael Goodwin



Review by Steve Rhodes
3 stars out of 4

A little toy car, that's what's driving Dirty Harry (Clint Eastwood) crazy in THE DEAD POOL. A remote controlled toy, the jet black Corvette must have a souped-up engine since it can chase Harry's squad car with ease. But it isn't the speed that spooks Inspector Harry Callahan; it's the lethal weapon hiding inside the innocent looking toy. Once under the police car, it will blow Harry and his partner to smithereens.

THE DEAD POOL, the last of the five Dirty Harry movies, is being re-released on DVD with a new digital transfer in celebration of the thirtieth anniversary of the start of the series. This time Harry is trying to stop a contest, nicknamed the dead pool, in which people are betting on the death of various San Francisco celebrities, including Harry.

Of all the Dirty Harry pictures, this one has the strongest supporting cast, which includes Patricia Clarkson as a pesky reporter, Liam Neeson as an avant-garde director and dead pool better and Jim Carrey as a soon-to-be-toast satanic rocker and hard druggie. Carrey is marvelously energetic and outrageous in one of his first films. THE DEAD POOL was released in 1988, and it wasn't until 1994 in ACE VENTURE: PET DETECTIVE and in THE MASK that Carrey's film career really took off. Carrey fans, of course, will remember one other well known film before THE DEAD POOL in which Carrey had a minor role -- 1986's PEGGY SUE GOT MARRIED.

The most disappointing part of the otherwise thoroughly enjoyable film is it's lack of classic Dirty Harry quotes. Still there are a few choice ones -- the best being an unprintable line about a fortune cookie. Another concerns his boss's lack of children. "Do you have any kids, lieutenant?," Harry asks. "No," Lt. Ackerman (Michael Goodwin) replies. "Lucky for them," Harry tells him with his classic deadpan look.

THE DEAD POOL runs 1:31. It is rated R for violence, nudity and language and would be acceptable for teenagers.

My son Jeffrey, age 12, gave the film ***. He thought it was funny. His favorite character was Harry's latest partner, played by Evan C. Kim.

The movie is available on DVD and video tape.

Copyright 2001 Steve Rhodes

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