The Dead Pool [PORTABLE]
The story concerns the manipulation of a dead pool game by a serial killer, whose efforts are confronted by the hardened detective Callahan. It co-stars Liam Neeson (in his first action film) and Patricia Clarkson, with Jim Carrey in his first dramatic role.
The Dead Pool
A man named Gus Wheeler, claiming responsibility for the murders, douses himself in gasoline and threatens to light himself on fire in front of a large crowd. Wheeler is not the murderer, but an attention seeker desperate to appear on camera. Walker foils his plan by refusing to film him; however Wheeler accidentally sets himself on fire, but fortunately Callahan saves him. Impressed by her refusal to exploit Wheeler, Callahan and Walker become close. Meanwhile, Swan tells Callahan and Quan of Harlan Rook, a deranged fan suffering from "process schizophrenia" who thinks the director stole his ideas and work; Swan has a restraining order against him. Rook kills television personality Nolan Kennard, another person on the dead pool list, using a radio-controlled car filled with C4 explosive under the victim's vehicle. Callahan finds a toy car wheel at the crime scene, and later sees another toy car following him and Quan. Recognizing the threat, they flee through the city pursued by the toy car and Rook himself controlling it from his car. Trapped in an alleyway, Rook sends the car in armed. Callahan is able to back the car up enough so the engine takes most of the blast. Both survive, but Quan has broken ribs.
Rook, claiming to be Swan, calls Walker at the television station and invites her to Swan's film studio for an interview. The police discover at Rook's apartment torn posters of Swan's films, large quantities of explosives, and Walker's name replacing Callahan's on the dead pool list. At the studio, Callahan confronts Rook holding Walker hostage. The detective surrenders his .44 Magnum revolver after Rook threatens to slit her throat. Callahan lures Rook to a pier after a chase during which Rook shoots at him with his own gun. Rook runs out of ammunition, and Callahan shoots Rook with a Svend Foyn harpoon cannon, impaling him. Callahan leaves with Walker as the police arrive.
One of the players in the Dead Pool is Peter Swan (Liam Neeson), a monomaniacal British horror-film director, who is making a rock video in San Francisco. One of the names on the list is the drug-addicted rock star who is starring in the video. When the rock star is found dead, the director naturally is a prime suspect. But Harry thinks the plot runs deeper than that, and he is right.
A typical modern dead pool might have players pick out celebrities who they think will die within the year. Most games start on January 1 and run for 12 months, although there are some variations on game length and timing.
In 2000, website Fucked Company claimed to be a "dot-com dead pool" which invited users to predict the next Internet startups to fail during that era's dot com bust. The site itself folded in 2007 after a long history as a target for strategic lawsuits against public participation by companies.
The concept and success strategies are also detailed in a (previously) annual guide called The Dead Pool, written by KQRS-FM radio personality Mike Gelfand and author Mike Wilkinson. KQRS-FM in Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota also does an annual on air dead pool contest, where show hosts and listeners will attempt to pick which celebrity will die in that calendar year.
In his AP news article "Some say death pools are in poor taste" (which brought national attention to The Old Blue Eyes Celebrity Death Watch), author Matt Sedensky writes, "Players scour newspapers and Web sites for news on celebrities' health; they rely on tips from insiders; and they consider a public figure's lifestyle, absence of recent appearances and rumors of illness."
A dead pool is a key plot element of the 1988 final installment of the Dirty Harry film series, The Dead Pool. Harry investigates the players, when several people listed in a game of dead pool die in suspicious circumstances.
The Marvel Comics character Deadpool (first appearing in 1991) takes his name after escaping from Ajax and Dr. Killebrew, who formed their own dead pool based on which of their experimental subjects would die first. In the 2016 film Deadpool, the titular character takes his hero name from a dead pool of mercenaries, himself included, who are regular patrons at his favorite bar.
In the MTV show Teen Wolf, the main plotline of Season 4 (2014) revolves around a dead pool specifically targeting the supernaturals of Beacon Hills, which is set up by a mysterious character named The Benefactor.
In the fifth installment of the Dirty Harry series, gritty cop Harry Callahan (Clint Eastwood) is fresh off the conviction of a major mob boss. When horror film director Peter Swan (Liam Neeson) develops a "dead pool" betting on celebrity deaths, he is shocked when a serial killer begins targeting those named, including TV reporter Samantha Walker .....
Imagine Cannon Films or PM Entertainment took over the Dirty Harry franchise. As wild as it is to see Jim Carrey lip synching to "Welcome to the Jungle," nothing quite tops the car chase with a deadly remote-controlled toy Corvette burning up the streets of San Francisco.
Of the five "Dirty Harry" movies, this is the only one in which Callahan does not drive a traditional police package vehicle. His assigned motor pool car is a 1988 Oldsmobile Delta 88. In the previous movies, the production companies used retired ex-police vehicles.
When champion swimmer and Olympic hopeful Zach Lindsey is found dead in a training pool, Castle & Beckett dive in to investigate his murder, and discover myriad secrets that might have led to his death. Alex Conrad, a mystery writer who Castle helped to get published, is in town and he spends time with Beckett. Castle is jealous of the time that Conrad and Beckett spend together.
Celebrity death pools are where fantasy sports leagues meet pop culture. The concept is simple. At the beginning of the year, you pick a slate of celebrities, usually ten; that you think will die within that calendar year. When one of your picks kicks off, you score points. The rules of the game vary somewhat depending on the pool. Some award points based on the number of people choosing the celebrity, others scale the points based on the age of the celebrity. Most allow teams to play as well as individuals. At the end of the year, the player (or team) with the highest number of points wins the purse.
And then there is the story of the player who picked a famous politician. All was well until this seasoned pooler found herself sitting across the table from the luminary at a lunch. Once she put the face to the name she cracked and immediately pulled him from her lists. The long and short of it is, for most of the people who play, and maybe for the people who run the pools, the bets are more on a name from a tabloid, not a real living breathing human being.
The Dead Pool is the fifth and final installment in the Dirty Harry film franchise. The 1988 sequel finds Inspector Callahan (Clint Eastwood) trying to solve a series of murders that appears to be a linked to a game that features a list of celebrities that were deemed likely to be dead in the near future. The film's cast included Liam Neeson, Evan Kim and featured one of the earliest acting roles for Jim Carrey.
Assuming they meant undiluted liquid pool chlorine, which has about three times the concentration of sodium hypochlorite as home laundry bleach, then a) the shirt would be gone (it would have holes in it before the last day in this timeline, so why is it still in the hotel room?) and b) the killer would have had chemical burns on body parts which were visible several times during the episode.
This film has the examples of: Actor Allusion: Harry performs a gun twirl like the Man With No Name.
All Asians Know Martial Arts: Kwan takes down one of the gunmen in Chinatown with a flurry of punches, followed up with an impressive spinning heel kick.
Badass Boast:Harry: Fuck with me, buddy, I'll kick your ass so hard you'll have to unbutton your collar to shit.
Batman Cold Open: The film opens with mob hitmen out to kill Harry.
BFG: Harry's Magnum, obviously. Exaggerated after the Big Bad takes Harry's gun from him; Harry grabs a harpoon gun to finish him off.
Big Bad: Harlan Rook, The Dead Pool Killer.
Bond One-Liner: After killing Rook by impaling him with a harpoon gun, Harry says to Capt. Donnelly, "He's hanging out back there."
Bottomless Magazines: Averted at the end of the film when the Big Bad takes Harry's revolver. Harry knows how many rounds are left and when the villain has fired off the last round, Harry says, "You're out of bullets. And you know what that means. You're shit out of luck" before impaling him through a wall with a harpoon gun.
Call-Back: Early in the movie Harry walks past a series of memorial plaques to police officers of San Francisco killed in the line of duty. They are the same plaques featured in the opening of Dirty Harry.
The Cameo: Guns N' Roses make uncredited cameo appearances at the funeral of Johnny Squares. They also appear during filming of a "nightmare scene" at the docks, where Slash fires a harpoon gun through a window and is berated by Swan.
Chekhov's Gun: The enormous Harpoon Gun from the film shoot.
Continuity Nod: One of the collected headlines in Samantha's notebook about Harry reads "Scorpio Killer Captured".
Deadly Remote Control Toy: Rook kills talk show host Nolan Kennard, another person on the dead pool list, using a radio-controlled car filled with C4 explosive under the victim's vehicle. Dirty Harry Callahan finds a toy car wheel at the crime scene, and later sees another toy car following him and Quan. Recognizing the threat, they flee through the city pursued by the toy car and Rook himself controlling it from his car.
Distracted by the Sexy: While spotting Quan weightlifting, Harry becomes distracted by a woman working out, hilarity ensues as Quan get stuck under the barbell.
Don't Explain the Joke The female reporter notes how Harry is having his 15 minutes. Then has to explain to Harry how Andy Warhol said everyone would be famous for 15 minutes, a well-known comment Harry is clearly old enough to have heard before.
Double Standard: A female journalist blackmails Harry into going to dinner with her. Imagine what would happen if a male journalist did that to a female cop.
Dub Name Change: Harry was renamed Harry Callaghan for the Italian release because the local distributor thought it sounded better.
Evil Brit: Rook speaks with a British accent. He more likely counts as an in universe Fake Brit, as he's taken on Peter Swan's persona due to his psychological condition.
Exorcist Head: Appears in the film that Peter Swan is directing. When the effect causing it malfunctions, Johnny Squares, fed up, accuses Swan for ripping off The Exorcist.Swan: This is not a rip-off. It's a homage, you stupid...
Fame Through Infamy: One of the random threats that Harry has to deal with is a man who calls saying he wants to confess the Dead Pool murders and he's going to set himself on fire... and when he's getting interviewed by Samantha, the man admits that he just made that call to have reporters come to the scene because he wanted to commit suicide by setting himself on fire and become remembered for it. Samantha manages to discourage him by turning off the camera and saying that nobody will air his death.
Genre Savvy: Aware of the fate of Harry's previous partners, Quan wears a Bulletproof Vest. He survives with only a few broken ribs after the remote-car bomb goes off. The only other partner of Harry's to survive was Chico from the first movie, also thanks to his vest.
Good Luck Charm: Quan's tattoos, which his grandfather insisted he get after hearing he was Harry's partner. Harry tells him a bulletproof vest would be more practical. Fortunately Quan's grandfather also told him, "When your partner gives you advice, take it."
Grand Finale: The end of the line for Dirty Harry. Eastwood retired the character after this movie, stating that his age would make him a parody.
Large Ham: Johnny Squares. Its a given when you're played by Jim Carrey.
Loony Fan: Harlan Rook is an obsessed fan of Peter Swan. Out of touch from reality, he accuses Swan of stealing ideas from him and tries frame him with the Dead Pool murders.
Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Harlan Rook, whose surname is bird which is a part of the same family as crows and ravens.
Plagiarism in Fiction: Subverted. Harlan Rook rages that Peter Swan stole the ideas of his films from Rook, and so his killing spree is justified revenge, but it's quickly revealed that Rook is just plain delusionally nuts.
Pre-emptive Declaration: The film has this during the Chinatown restaurant robbery scene:Harry Callahan: You forgot your fortune cookie.Lead Robber: [turns] WHAT?[Harry gives a smug grin, and pulls out a fortune]Harry Callahan: It says, "You're shit out of luck." [shoots the lead robber]
Prima Donna Director: The egotistical horror film director Peter Swan.
Red Herring: For most of the film it looks like egotistical horror director Peter Swan is the Dead Pool killer, but at the end the real killer turns out to be Harlan Rook, a crazed fan of Swan's.
Before the talk show host is murdered via car bomb, a man recently fired by Swan is seen at a hardware store wearing a Hotel Satan jacket, watching him on some in store TVs and buying some stuff that could be used to make a bomb.
Rule of Three: While investigating the death of a drug-abusing rocker, Harry's partner Al Quan states his personal belief that celebrities always die in threes.
Self-Immolation: Harry, with the help of Samantha, defuses a situation where a guy demands cameras to film him setting himself on fire.
Shout-Out The chase scene with the explosive RC car, is a shout out to The Chase Scene in Bullitt.
The "calling for an ambulance in advance" stunt is from The New Centurions.
Take That, Critics!: Molly Fisher, the film critic who becomes the second murder victim is based on Pauline Kael, in response to her accusing the first film of promoting fascism.
Villain Opening Scene: Before we see Harry, we first see Rook in his apartment, watching the news and reading a Rolling Stone magazine while making the Dead Pool list, though his face is obscured during the scene.