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Badge 373 is a crime thriller film inspired, as was The French Connection, by the life and career of Eddie Egan, here called "Eddie Ryan". The film, which has a screenplay by journalist Pete Hamill, was co-produced and directed by Howard Koch, and stars Robert Duvall as Ryan, with Verna Bloom, Henry Darrow and Eddie Egan himself as a police lieutenant.

The film was not successful, either at the box office or with the critics.

Plot

Eddie Ryan (Robert Duvall), a tough, no-nonsense, abrasive and racist Irish cop, has to turn in his badge after scuffling with a Puerto Rican suspect who then falls to his death from a rooftop, but that doesn't stop him from heading out on a one-man crusade to find out who killed his partner of three years, Gigi Caputo (Louis Cosentino), all the while neglecting his new live-in girlfriend, Maureen (Verna Bloom). Ryan's search leads him to Puerto Rican drug kingpin Sweet Willie (Henry Darrow), and a shipment of guns for Puerto Rican independenistas.

Cast

  • Robert Duvall as Eddie Ryan
  • Verna Bloom as Maureen
  • Henry Darrow as William Salazar a.k.a. Sweet William
  • Eddie Egan as Lt. Scanlon
  • Felipe Luciano as Ruben
  • Tina Cristiani as Mrs. Caputo
  • Marina Durell as Rita Garcia
  • Chico Martinez as Frankie Diaz
  • Jose Duval as Ferrer
  • Louis Cosentino as Gigi Caputo
  • Luis Avalos as Chico
  • Nubia Olivero as Mrs. Diaz
  • Sam Schacht as Assistant D.A.
  • Edward F. Carey as The Commissioner
  • "Big" Lee as Junkie in casino
  • Duane Morris as Gay in casino
  • John Marriott as Superintendent
  • Joe Veiga as Manuel (Botica [sic] Proprietor)
  • Mark Tendler as Harbor Lights bouncer
  • Robert Weil as Hans
  • Rose Ann Scamardella as Herself
  • Pete Hamill as Reporter
  • Larry Appelbaum as Copo at toll booth
  • John McCurry as Bus driver
  • Bob Farley as Patrolman
  • Tracey Walter as Delivery boy
  • John Scanlon, Jimmy Archer, Ric Mancini, Mike O'Dowd as Tugboat crew
  • Robert Miano, Pompie Pomposello, Hector Troy as Sweet William's hoods'' *Miguel Alejandro, Harry Collazo, Damian Colon as '"Ruben's gang'' *[[Johnny Pachero]] & his Orchestra as ''Band at Carorrojeno's


Cast notes:

Production

Badge 373 was shot on location on the streets of New York Citymarker. At one point, in what film writer Jeff Stafford calls a deliberate attempt to recall the car-chase scene from The French Connection, which was also based on the exploits of Eddie Egan, Robert Duvall as police detective Eddie Ryan attempts to chase down suspects in their car by hijacking a city bus, the 14th Street crosstown. The chase does not follow actual Manhattanmarker geography, and passes locations including the West 125th viaduct and a meatpacking plant, and a branch of the record store King Karol at 460 West 42nd Streetmarker. Locations for other scenes include the Manhattan Bridgemarker, with the World Trade Centermarker's Twin Towers in the background, and the FDR Drive, with the United Nations headquarters visible.

On August 10, 1973, Paramount Pictures rejected a demand by the Puerto Rican Action Coalition to withdraw the film for what the coalition called the movie's racism.

Crew

  • Director: Howard Koch
  • Producer: Howard Koch
  • Screenplay: Pete Hamill
  • Music composed and conducted by: J.J. Jackson
  • Director of photography: Arthur J. Ornitz
  • Editor: John Woodcock
  • Associate producer: Lawrence Appelbaum
  • Assistant to the producer: Irwin Yablans
  • Inspired by the exploits of: Eddie Egan
  • Art director: Philip Rosenberg
  • Costumes: Frank Thompson
  • Second unit director: Michael Moore
  • Production manager: Jim DiGangi
  • 1st assistant director: Michael P. Petrone
  • 2nd assistant directors: Robert Grand, Gerrold T. Brandt, Jr.
  • Technical advisor: Eddie Egan
  • Script supervisor: Roberta Hodes
  • Casting: Bernie Styles
  • Set decorator: Edward Stewart
  • Set dresser: Gary Brink
  • Hair stylist: Vern Caruso
  • Property master: Al Griswold
  • Costumer: George Newman
  • Special effects: Conrad Brink
  • Sound recording: Dennis Maitland
  • Re-recording: John Wilkinson


Critical response

The critical reaction to Badge 373 was generally negative. In the New York Times, Roger Greenspan pointed out the biases of the film: "All of the evil is perpetrated by Puerto Ricans, either innocent but violent revolutionaries who run around shouting 'Puerto Rico Libre!' or the uninnocent but equally violent nonrevolutionaries who manipulate them. Against such forces, Eddie the hard-nosed cop has only the instincts of his personal bigotry to guide him. And invariably the instincts of his personal bigotry turn out to be right. ... [U]nless you care to hate Puerto Ricans (or Irish cops) I don't see how the movie can have anything for you".

References

  1. Business depicted was a botanica
  2. Stafford, Jeff "Badge 373" (TCM article)
  3. At approximately the 54-minute mark
  4. At approximately the 57-minute, 30-second mark. Address per King Karol advertisement in The Village Voice September 3, 1970, p.14
  5. At approximately the 72-minute mark


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