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Dirty Harry finally becomes the worst cop in the history of cops when he decides asking questions or arresting people is boring; it's just better to shoot everyone in the face. Sprinkle in some karate, self-deprecating jokes, an unnecessary love interest, old-man grumble dialogue, a car/rc car/car chase, dubious action, and a plot that leaves the audience thinking it was invented by monkeys and you've got the recipe for a franchise killer. Goodbye, Dirty Harry.
The primary problem with The Dead Pool is the incapable hands behind the camera. The script is incredibly dumb, with a "surprise" twist that is blatantly obvious from the first scene in the movie. You're then stuck with a setup for the twist that you're already clued into for the next hour. You know that all the character actions are irrelevant to the actual story and it makes it painful to deal with. So you've got an audience bored with the movie, why not put in another plot as a vehicle for action? Seriously, when your main story doesn't have any call for action, don't add a subplot that is just there so that your protagonist can shoot people in the face. Terrible writing.
Next there's the horrible directing. The movie starts with some horrible stock shots of San Fran with post-production slow motion. Slo-mo is bad enough but slowing down stock shots? What? Team that up with some of the worst crappy cop music that sounds like euro-pop and you've got a pretty bad start for the audience.
Then there's Harry. He's immune to bullets, he shoots only once and each pull of the trigger meets its target right in the face, his battle strategies are stupid and confusing, he doesn't bother with arresting anyone, he shoots people in the back, he pushes his girlfriend down and he's apparently Tom Jones to the women of San Fran. Ol' DH sucks pretty hard in this one.
It's a horrendously awful film. But it does have it's fun parts. The scenes where Harry and his love interest get googly eyes at each other are hilarious and are quite unbelievable. The RC car chase is possibly as dumb as anything ever in a blockbuster franchise, rivaling the likes of Roland Emmerich's 2012, or the invisible Aston Martin in Die Another Day. It's so dumb, but quite hilarious. It's only second in stupid to the epic Jim Carrey, Welcome to the Jungle lip-sync scene. It's just Jim Carrey doing his usual Jim Carrey thing....in the middle of Dirty Harry movie. I could have gone for so much more of Jim, but spoiler alert - he's barely in this film. But while he's there!
As a whole, The Dead Pool, is a template for how to kill your franchise. I would have suspected that people would have started leaving the theater within 15 minutes. Unfortunately, the stupid story and sitting through it, waiting for the fun parts to arrive is just too much to give this a recommendation. The fun parts are great but just too few and far between. Who wants to see a grouchy old guy go on dates with a woman 30 years younger than him, while Liam Neeson says he's not the guy for an hour and a half. Blech.
Over the top action:
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