On a recent conference trip to Pennsylvania, a faculty member (who shall go nameless here to protect his career) took me to a shooting range and produced a collection of famous guns from the movies. It was great — we shot a Civil War revolver, a revolver of the kind used by the army in the old west, a “Dirty Harry” Magnum .44, a WWI-era Colt semi-automatic, James Bond’s Walther PPK — well, you get the idea. At least I learned why the gunmen used their hands to rapid fire with the hammer in the cowboy movies, and why it took so long to reload during the Civil War
But it got me to thinking — what is the best firearm in the movies — the one that, if you could have only one, you would pick? I nominate the Magnum .44 from “Dirty Harry.” I suppose the James Bond gun is popular, but when I shot it, I thought it was all show and no action. Any other nominees?
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