Desert Eagle .50


“Mr. Anderson.” All the bad guys in the Matrix (including Agent Smith) carry the Desert Eagle 50. I think that movie had to be the first time that I noticed this unique and behemoth handgun. Since then I’ve seen it in many movies and TV shows. I recently had a chance to shoot one.


It is chambered in the very large, $2.00 per shot .50 AE (Action Express) which was made specifically for this gun. It is by far the most powerful gun I’ve ever shot. That goes for long guns too.

When I say powerful, I’m talking about recoil and sound. I understand the muzzle velocity  is crazy fast as well (1900 fps). Couple that with a heavy projectile (300 ish grain).

It goes “BOOM”

It was extremely loud. Like…..howitzer loud. Not a pop. The sound was rolling off the hills and trees for 5 seconds. My ears were ringing despite the fact I had on muffs.


I usually lock my right arm in the weaver stance with my Glock. This proved to be a painful mistake with the Desert Eagle. As brute force pushed back and a little up, it caused pain to the upper bone in my forearm ( the radius I believe).


Recoil was substantial, but could’ve  actually been worse. This gun does not operate like most semi-auto pistols.  Instead it is gas operated like an AK-47 (kind of). Some of the gases are diverted to go back into it’s peculiar action.


The pistol (if you can call it that) weighs 4.5 pounds…….empty! With ammo in it you need a forklift. The frame and slide are all metal, and a lot of it.

I was ok with a two hand grip, but holding it out at arms length with one hand reminded me of punishment in grade school. Agent Smith is seen shooting (accurately) one handed throughout the film. No way.

Not the Best Self-Defense Choice

The Desert Eagle is not a good self-defense choice unless you are Jesse “The Body” Ventura. Concealed carry is absolutely out of the question unless you carry it loose (Uzi style) in a jacket by a shoulder strap.

Attempting to quickly move this handgun around feels like swinging a cinder block. Accuracy is out the window. I can’t imagine trying to hit a moving target.

Envisioning what would happen if you shot at an intruder in your home gives me the shivers. Whether you hit the target or not, your next 3 neighbors would have .50 caliber holes in their walls.

Follow up shots are impossible for a couple seconds and it only hold seven (very large) rounds.


Does anyone need a gun like this? Obviously Agent Smith and a few large game hunters might, but I don’t really see this cannon as being anything other than a very cool, expensive novelty. Despite that fact, it was an absolute blast to shoot.

Anybody got an extra $1700 bucks and a bipod you can throw my way?


Do you have any fun, novelty guns?

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  1. Don’t own any novelty guns, but I’ve had a chance to shoot a few. The best (not counting the 120 mm main gun on the M1A1 Abrams) has got to be the Barrett cal. 50 sniper rifle. We had one in our troop overseas, and we officers “exercised our right” to shoot it during a range firing with our troop sniper team. We put a milk jug on a hill about 1000 meters away and took aim. Man, was that fun.

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