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Lethal Weapon (1987)

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Two newly paired cops who are complete opposites must put aside their differences in order to catch a gang of drug smugglers.

Director:

Richard Donner

Writer:

Shane Black
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Popularity
1,887 ( 425)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 5 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Mel Gibson ... Martin Riggs
Danny Glover ... Roger Murtaugh
Gary Busey ... Joshua
Mitchell Ryan ... The General
Tom Atkins ... Michael Hunsaker
Darlene Love ... Trish Murtaugh
Traci Wolfe ... Rianne Murtaugh
Jackie Swanson ... Amanda Hunsaker
Damon Hines Damon Hines ... Nick Murtaugh
Ebonie Smith ... Carrie Murtaugh
Bill Kalmenson ... Beat Cop
Lycia Naff ... Dixie
Patrick Cameron Patrick Cameron ... Cop #1
Don Gordon ... Cop #2
Jimmie F. Skaggs ... Drug Dealer #1
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Storyline

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

Taglines:

Two cops. Glover carries a weapon. Gibson is one. He's the only L.A. cop registered as a LETHAL WEAPON. See more »

Genres:

Action | Crime | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

6 March 1987 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Arma mortal See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,829,949, 8 March 1987, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$65,207,127

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$120,207,127
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut) | (director's cut)

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| Dolby Stereo (35 mm prints) (4 channels)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Murtaugh's license plate of his car is E641985. See more »

Goofs

The car that Roger is driving has the shifter in "park". See more »

Quotes

Martin Riggs: Do you really wanna jump? Do you wanna? Well then thats fine with me. Come on, lets do it asshole. Let's do it. I wanna do it. I wanna do it.
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 »

Connections

Referenced in Alias: The Box: Part 2 (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

The First Nowell
(uncredited)
Arrangement by John Stainer
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
This is the classic action film that introduces one of the best action duos ever to come to the big screen.
12 November 2000 | by Michael DeZubiriaSee all my reviews

Lethal Weapon is a nearly perfectly structured action movie. The acting, the story, the script, the directing, even the IDEA of the movie all combine to make up a fascinating and thrill-packed police film. The cross-cutting at the beginning of the film was particularly effective, in my opinion, as Martin Riggs (Mel Gibson) and Roger Murtaugh (Danny Glover) are introduced. The startling difference between their separate lives provides for tons of fun to be had later in the movie. Roger starts his day off as the family man reluctantly celebrating his 50th birthday party with his numerous children and his loving wife in the big family house, while Riggs is shown waking up naked in his trashy trailer and beginning his day with a healthy breakfast of a cigarette and a beer.

The fact that both Roger and Riggs hated that they had to work together was especially effective in creating a touching atmosphere as they grew to be closer and closer friends. They worked so well together in this movie; it was a symbiotic relationship. It was almost like they fed off of each other, and kept each other in line and out of trouble. I also liked the way that they showed that Riggs was deeply angered when he learned that the bad guys had taken Murtaugh's daughter. Things like this, when done right, can really get you to sit up and really get into the movie, and it was definitely done right here. Riggs was also very amusing in his anxiousness about being a cop (`Why don't you let me go to sleep?' `No, come on, we gotta get up and catch bad guys!'), and Gary Busey delivers an excellent performance as the lead bad guy. This is the type of role that he plays best (see "Under Siege").

Although the violence was painfully present in some parts (the torture scenes were short but extremely difficult to watch), the film never relied on violence to pull it along or keep the audience's attention. The story was sufficient enough so that there was no overindulgence necessary in anything like that. In this film you see the first of the now traditional Lethal Weapon scenes in which Riggs and Murtaugh stagger away from a smoking crime scene, seeming to hold each other up. The final fight scene between Riggs and Mr. Joshua (Busey) was a little excessive, and there were a few scenes which were a bit faulty (how did the guy on the building ledge expect to kill himself when there was such a huge air bag inflated on the ground directly below him?), but overall this was a spectacular crime thriller. The movie rushes along at a feverish pace, and particularly Gibson's and Glover's success working together on screen make this a timeless action film that is not to be missed.


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