$2,264 (magnumresearch.com) Next to the single-action colt, the Desert Eagle is probably the most photographed handgun in film history. And now the .50 Action Express comes with gold bengal tiger striping that actually does work as camo. The gas-operated semiauto has a rotating three-lug bolt to contain the massive round that’s powerful enough for big game.
A picatinny rail will accept scope rings and reflex sights. Tester Leroy Van Buggenum shot a couple of dozen rounds through the pistol and found it well balanced and solidly built, and its 4-plus-pound weight went a long way toward taking the sting out of it. I shot it bare-handed; the recoil stung a bit, but that’s to be expected from a gun that sounds as if somebody’s dynamiting stumps when it goes off. There’s an ambidextrous safety, and the polygonal rifling is said to reduce wear. The history of the .50 AE includes once having been labeled a destructive device, but that’s been remedied. If you like to hunt with style and flair, this is the ticket. —Tom McIntyre