Monday, October 10, 2016

McQuestionable

John Sturges made some great movies, including The Great Escape, The Magnificent Seven, Bad Day at Black Rock, Gunfight at the O.K. Corral, The Eagle Has Landed, and The Satan Bug, among others. But 1974's McQ, starring John Wayne as a Dirty Harry-esque rogue cop seeking revenge for the death of his partner, is as limp and by-the-numbers an affair as I've seen in quite some time. As police detective and then private eye McQ, Wayne does his best to embody the spirit of the times, which rightly or wrongly seemed to assume the United States was slipping into a maelstrom of urban crime and corruption that couldn't be stopped. In the end it turns out that practically everyone has betrayed McQ, a twist that could have been interesting but instead just seems tired and overly cynical.

Still, if you want to see how Dirty Harry might have turned out had John Wayne accepted the role instead of passing it on to Clint Eastwood, this is worth a watch for curiosity's sake. 

1 comment:

Jeff Shyluk said...

McQ... so very tired. Watch it once like you say, to see John Wayne do Dirty Harry. Otherwise a nonessential film.