Movie Review: The “Lethal Weapon” Series (Pt. 1 of 4)

I’m sitting in my home office, half-watching “Lethal Weapon 3” starring Mel Gibson and Danny Glover as I try to keep focus on the music mix I’m creating for Soundcloud. I’m not having much luck because I’ve seen the series so many times that I know when to look at the TV, which is a good 75+% of the movie. I’d already “half-watched” Parts 1 and 2, which is the main reason my mix isn’t done. Even though I own all four DVDs, I resign myself to the fact that I’m going to watch Lethal Weapon 3 & 4 as if I’d never seen them before.

When you think about it, this series has everything you can ask for in a Buddy Cop saga: action, suspense, drama, family values, awesome stunts, energetic musical score, surprise moments, story continuity, great laughs and best of all, an example of true friendship. With that, I’m going to touch on each one and take you on a trip down memory lane in four different and relatively short (for a change) blog posts.

Keep in mind, this is not necessarily a movie review. Just an overview with a few notable moments…

Warning – Here be spoilers (and some use of quoted expletives)

Lethal Weapon (1987): Martin Riggs (Gibson) and Roger Murtaugh (Glover) begin as the unlikeliest duo: a suicidal widower, (deemed psychologically unstable) lone-wolf narcotics officer, paired with a conventional, family-oriented homicide detective nearing retirement, looking to finish his tenure as incident-free as possible. Right out of the gate we know that two personalities on such extreme ends of the spectrum will deliver great at-odds banter. Together they must take down a professional group of heroin smugglers led by a retired general.

  • Coolest Moment: Riggs kills his torturing interrogator and rescues Murtaugh in a seemingly unwinnable situation.
  • Funniest Moment: The frantic crying of the suicide jumper after Riggs handcuffs himself to him and makes them both jump (to a safe landing).
  • Most Suspenseful Moment: Murtaugh’s captors threaten to harm (insinuating the rape of) his daughter in order to obtain information from him. The moment when she runs to him handcuffed, attempting to hug him as he’s bound to the chair is heart-pounding.
  • Best Line/Exchange: Murtaugh (to the police officers arresting hitman Mr. Joshua, having suffered defeat to Riggs) “Get that shit off my lawn”.
  • Most Enjoyable Moment: Battered and fatigued, Riggs and Murtaugh shoot Mr. Joshua together, before Riggs collapses into his partner’s arms.
  • Rank (Out Of The Four): #1 – Not knowing what to expect of the movie, I thoroughly enjoyed the chemistry between the two characters. No one had any idea that it would evolve into a franchise (especially since that wasn’t the way for buddy cop movies back in the 80s), so this was a nice “hit and run” (or so we thought) for adrenaline-lovers. Great story.

See? Short and to the point! Click here for Part 2!

And don’t forget to leave your opinions in the comment section below.

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