DVD Review: The Dead Pool: Deluxe Edition

Warner Home Entertainment
SRP: $14.97

Director: Buddy Van Horn
Stars: Clint Eastwood, Liam Neeson, Patricia Clarkson

The Dead Pool is the fifth, and final, film in the Dirty Harry series. Released in 1988, it bares very little resemblance to the original that launched the iconic cop. While the first couple of DH films were gritty and tense, The Dead Pool is…well, sort of goofy.

This time around, Harry is investigating a series of suspicious deaths of celebrities. At each scene, lists are left. These lists include a dead pool as well as the names of those participating. A Dead Pool is a wager in which folks pick famous people (usually) that they think will die.

Patricia Clarkeson also stars as a reporter and potential love interest for Harry; and Liam Neeson plays an egotistical horror director that is a suspect.

While this sounds like it has promise, the filmmakers choose to play things over-the-top, resulting in a film that is as much a parody of the original as it is a sequel.

That is not to say that the Dead Pool is bad, it has its moments and offers up some nice action scenes. We get to see Harry with a harpoon gun! Who would have thought he would find something bigger than his Magnum? Jim Carey has a bit part that is…interesting, he channels Axl Rose for his role as a rock star.

Like the other reissues, the case is a cool one, with the plastic case front made to look like broken glass through which Harry’s Magnum sticks out.

First up is a set of trailers, one for each of the Dirty Harry films. We also get “The Craft of Dirty Harry,” this looks at the folks behind the scenes (editing, scoring and whatnot). An interesting little piece that comes in a little over twenty minutes. There is also a commentary track with cinematographer Jack Green and producer David Valdes. Not a bad track, but casual fans can skip it.

TDP is fun and breezy, never taking itself too seriously; a popcorn flick for a lazy Sunday afternoon. While not the ideal way for the series to end, fans of Dirty Harry can have fun with it. Just don’t expect anything other that a shoot ‘em up.

Order The Dead Pool from Amazon.

Jeremy Lynch
For more reviews from myself, and the rest of the Crimespree crew, check out the index of reviews.