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Lethal Weapon (1987)

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A veteran policeman, Murtaugh, is partnered with a younger, suicidal officer, Riggs. They both have one thing in common: hating working in pairs. Now they must learn to work with one another to stop a gang of drug smugglers.



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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 5 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
The General
Ebonie Smith ...
Patrick Cameron ...
Cop #1
Cop #2
Jimmie F. Skaggs ...
Drug Dealer #1


Martin Riggs is an L.A. cop with suicidal tendencies and Roger Murtaugh is the unlucky police officer with whom Riggs is assigned. Together they uncover a huge drug-smuggling operation, and as their success rate grows so does their friendship. Written by Graeme Roy <gsr@cbmamiga.demon.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Pity the bad guys. See more »


Action | Crime | Thriller


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

6 March 1987 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Arma mortal  »

Box Office


$15,000,000 (estimated)


$65,207,127 (USA)

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (cut) | (director's cut)

Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints) (4 channels)



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Murtaugh tells Riggs that Huntsaker saved his life in the Ia Drang Valley in 1965. Mel Gibson would later play Col. Hal Moore in We Were Soldiers (2002) which is a movie adaptation of that battle. See more »


Joshua shoots open the front door of Murtaugh's house and walks into the kitchen. The TV is turned on and the breakfast table has a two cereal boxes, some flowers and some place settings on it. It is being lit by the light hanging above the table. Joshua fires a couple of shots into the TV screen to turn it off, and when it cuts to a wide shot with Joshua's back to the camera, we can now see that the table is covered in debris and the hanging light is out and laying on top of the table even though he never fires his gun at that area of the room. See more »


[When Joshua is panting on the lawn after the title-fight]
Roger Murtaugh: Get that shit off my lawn!
See more »

Crazy Credits

There is a dedication to Dar Robinson, a stuntman who died in a motorbike accident as Lethal Weapon was in Post-Production. See more »


Spoofed in The Mod Squad (1999) See more »


I'll Be Home For Christmas
Written by Kim Gannon, Walter Kent, and Buck Ram
Performed by Elvis Presley
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

The Best Cop Film Of The 1980's
23 May 2002 | by (England) – See all my reviews

I have watched Lethal Weapon dozens of times and it still entertains me like it originally did in 1987.

A good cop movie has to have the following ingredients; chemistry between it's stars, plenty of action, plenty of humour, action, car chases and a damn good villain.

American cops seemed to be stereotyped in movies. They always seem to be crazy and without any respect for their superiors. I hope they're not like that in real life but it's perfect for a movie.

It's great seeing Riggs and Murtaugh become good buddies by the end of the movie. I like cop films like that.

The really great thing about Lethal Weapon is the action. Riggs is crazy in this film-I wouldn't want to meet a cop like him. Riggs and Murtaugh are opposites but they say opposites attract. Riggs is mad and Murtaugh is sane. Together they spell bad news for the bad guys.

I would also like to give credit to Gary Busey who never disappoints when it comes to playing a villain (or indeed any other part).

Great movie!

35 of 47 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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What's a better version, the theatrical cut or the director's cut? GoodfellaSeinfeld
Anyone else miss the 80's? cmfalf
The significance of the title, "Lethal Weapon." jeevese
Favorite Mel Gibson quote from the movie? KyleH87
I'm too old for this ____. Really? bandcgattis
Characters/Actors Ages? JediRob
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