"I’ll be thinking about that when I’m pissin’ on your grave."
Description: Clint Eastwood as secret service agent Frank Horrigan responds to assassin Mitch Leary (John Malkovich) in the motion picture In the Line of Fire (1993). Leary's question: "Do you really think you have the guts to take a bullet, Frank?"
In the film, Leary challenges secret service agent Frank Horrigan to catch him before he kills the President of the United States (Codename: "Traveler").
Frank was one of the bodyguards on duty at the Kennedy assassination, and blames himself for not going the extra mile to prevent the President’s death. Taunting Frank via telephone, the illusive Mitch Leary, a deranged, ex-CIA "wetboy" questions Frank's loyalty and courage.
"What did happen to you that day? Only one agent reacted to the gunfire, and you were closer to Kennedy than he was. You must have looked up at the window of the Texas Book Depository, but you didn't react. Late at night, when the demons come, do you see the rifle coming out of that window, or do you see Kennedy's head being blown apart? If you'd reacted to that first shot, could you have gotten there in time to stop the big bullet? And if you had - that could've been your head being blown apart." - Mitch Leary
In preparation for killing the president, Mitch Leary devises a special composite gun that will be undetectable to metal scanners. As he sits by the edge of a lake, he loads his gun and fires a test round into water. Two hunters happened to see Mitch and sit down to have a little chat. But this will be their last conversation on earth, because Mitch shoots both of them to eliminate any witnesses (but more likely, because Leary just enjoys killing people).
|Hunter:||So what the hell kind of kind of gun is that?|
|Mitch Leary:||Something I made.|
|Hunter:||Wouldn't be interested in selling it, wouldya?|
|Mitch Leary:||No, I need it,|
|Mitch Leary:||To assassinate the president. [The two hunters laugh, then Mitch shoots them]|
Leary, whose motivation for killing the president is "to punctuate the dreariness," continues to taunt Horrigan by phone, saying, " Do you know how easily I could kill you, Frank? Do you know how many times I watched you go in and out of that apartment? You are still alive because I have allowed you to live so you show me some GODDAMN RESPECT!"
Meanwhile, Frank befriends and romances Lily Raines (Rene Russo), a female secret service agent who aids Frank in his investigation to track down and prevent Mitch Leary from carrying out his assassination plot.
|Frank Horrigan:||I've never worked with a female agent before. How many are there?|
|Lilly Raines:||About 125.|
|Frank Horrigan:||Mm. Pure window dressing.|
|Lilly Raines:||Excuse me?|
|Frank Horrigan:||Window dressing. About 125 out of a little over 2,000. They have you all around so that the President can look good to his feminist voters.|
|Lilly Raines:||Do you make an effort to be obnoxious, or is it a gift?|
|Frank Horrigan:||It's a gift. Let's face it, half the things we do are window dressing. Take running alongside that limousine: it'd take an anti-tank missile to put a dent in that damn thing. There we are, out for show, trying to make the President look more presidential.|
In the interim, Leary kills Frank's partner Al D'Andrea (Dylan McDermott) and two other agents in a rooftop chase in Washington, DC. A short time later, Leary calls Frank who asks, "What do you see when you're in the dark, and the demons come?" Leary replies, "I see you, Frank. I see you standing over the grave of another dead president." Angered, Frank replies, "That's not going to happen. I'm onto you."
Leary declines Frank's assumption, and says, " Forget it, Frank. I am willing to trade my life for his. I am smart, and I am willing, and that is all it takes. That president is coming home from California in a box." Frank's demands, "Where in California?" But Leary as illusive as ever, says, "Uh, the address? Come on, Frank. I'll keep you in the game, but I'm not going to throw it for you."
After Leary tips off Frank that his will kill the president in California, Frank asks to be assigned to the Presidential Protective Detail at a Los Angeles political campaign fund event. He knows that he can "spot him" and "anticpate him" before Leary can get to his target.
As Leary pops out of the crowd and fires his gun, Frank, shouts, "Gun!" and blocks the bullet before it hits the president. Luckily, Frank was wearing a bullet proof vest, which Leary takes advantage of by taking Frank hostage and using him as a shield as he flees from the auditorium.
In the end, Frank defeats Leary who falls to his death. As Leary dangled from outside of a hotel elevator, Frank offeedr his hand, and said, " Take my hand. If you don't, you'll die." Smiling, Leary replied, "Do you want to save me, Frank?" to which Frank responded, "To be frank and honest with you, no. But it's my job." Leary refused Frank's hand and died.
When Frank gets home to his apartment, he finds the following message on his answering machine:
"Hello, Frank. By the time you hear this, it'll be over. The President is most likely dead, and so am I. I wonder, Frank, did you kill me? Who won our game? Not that it really matters, for among friends like you and me, it's not whether you win or lose but how you play the game, and now the game is done and it's time to get on with your life. But I worry, Frank, that you have no life to get on with. You're a good man, and good men like you and me are destined to walk a lonely road. Goodbye, and good luck."