Shake the Scene: Dirty Harry

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Dirty Harry (1971)

Dirty_harryThe Scene: Scorpio hijacks a school bus.

Why I Love This Scene: I don’t know how I saw this classic as a young kid but I saw a lot of R rated gems as a kid and it’s amazing I’m a functional adult without a record. Anyway, I grew up a Clint Eastwood fan and most of that admiration came from his Dirty Harry films. There’s a ton of great scenes in Dirty Harry but the one that stands out the most to me from when I was younger was the scene when Scorpio, played by Andrew Robinson, hijacks a bus with a half-dozen or so kids. Robinson is downright frightening in this movie as a whole but in this scene he brings creepy and sinister to a whole new level. First he threatens the bus driver with his pistol and then starts to sing kids’ songs with the kids to distract them. His evil rendition of “Row Row Row Your Boat” still sends shivers up my spine. Then he harshly slaps a distressed kid in the face to stop him from causing a scene and to continue singing. When I was a kid, this scene unnerved me and totally ruined “Row Row Row Your Boat” for me. Whenever my daughters sing it I immediately hear Robinson sing it like a psychopath. Then when out of nowhere Dirty Harry appears on a overpass (seriously, how did he know Scorpio not only hijacked a school bus but where it was going!?) and jumps on the bus, Scorpio starts shooting the roof, freaking out the kids. They don’t make madmen like this anymore. 

5 thoughts on “Shake the Scene: Dirty Harry

  1. Good movie! Good post! The only thing I can think of when I see this is thinking about the guy from Hellraiser and thinking about how a dude that looked exactly like him was in a shitty porn I didn’t watch back in the 90s.

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