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
1,070 ( 355)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 7 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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Did You Know?

Trivia

Features the film debut of Joan Severance. See more »

Goofs

At the beginning of the movie, when Riggs drinks a sip for his bottle beer, some spill out of his mouth and you can clearly see is a transparent liquid (H2O?), but not beer. See more »

Quotes

Martin Riggs: Hey, you know what?
Roger Murtaugh: What?
Martin Riggs: Well, I think your daughter kinda likes me.
Roger Murtaugh: If you touch her, I'll kill you.
Martin Riggs: Ha! You'll try.
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Alternate Versions

The Director's Cut (not actually a true director's cut, but a marketing promotion by Warner Bros.) features seven minutes of additional footage. In a new trailer scene, Riggs smashes his TV with a beer bottle; later he buys a new one. Murtaugh, before partnering with Riggs, goes to practice at the firing range. Riggs, before the dope shoot out, answers a call in a school yard with a sniper. Riggs walks out into the line of fire and kills the sniper, emptying his clip into him. Riggs, after leaving Murtaugh's house, goes out to solicit a prostitute. The aftermath is not shown, but Riggs says he wants to take her home to watch The Stooges with him; for this he pays her $100. See more »

Connections

Featured in Maximum Impact: The Legacy of 'Lethal Weapon' (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

I'll Be Home For Christmas
(uncredited)
Written by Kim Gannon, Walter Kent, and Buck Ram
Performed by Elvis Presley
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User Reviews

 
Will never be matched!
26 May 2005 | by MinorityReporterSee all my reviews

This is not only one of the best cop-buddy movies but it is also by far one of Mel Gibson's best movies. In my opinion it almost matches Braveheart which is by all standards a great movie.

First of all the overall acting in this movie is nothing short of excellent. Especially Mel Gibson portrays the deeply disturbed Martin Riggs with great finesse and his ability to create nuanced characters shines through in this movie. You genuinely feel with him and feel the incredible weight of his wife's death on him. Furthermore one of the things that makes Mel Gibson one of the really great actors in Hollywood is his ability to portray rage. Pure, uncontrolled rage and he certainly lifts the movie a few nudges acting wise. The other lead actor, Danny Glover, is also great in his role as the aging family father and he literally embodies the part of Roger Murtaugh and his line: "I'm too old for this s*h*i*t" has become a legend in the film world. Gary Busey is one of my top 10 screen bad guys. Not because he is an especially talented or great actor but he brings an edge to his character that makes one believe that he is the perfect nemesis for Riggs. Last but not least we have the underused Mitch Ryan (whom we have come to know best in the part of Edward Montgomery in Dharma and Greg) and he also does a great job with the relatively few lines he is given.

In terms of story and interaction between the characters I can only say that it is close to perfection. The meeting between the two main characters is a classic moment and their slowly growing to like each other is also brilliantly done. The on-screen chemistry between the two actors is excellent and I'm tempted to say that they have the best chemistry EVER in film history (perhaps bested only by Anthony Hopkins and Jodie Foster in Silence of the Lambs). In terms of the story the relationship between Riggs and Murtaugh has been weighed more heavily than in the following movies which means that the villains will naturally be less refined than in the following movies and this weighing is very acceptable because the relationship between Riggs and Murtaugh is the carrying element of the movie.

The action in the movie is excellent for an 80s movie. I'll even say that I think that the action in this movie is better than much of the action in movies today because somehow it just seems much more believable in this movie than it does in movies like Die Another Day for example where the action has been amplified so much that it just becomes ridiculous and, lets face it, silly. Most of the action involves Mel Gibson and this works great because he really is one of the greats when it comes to action. He gives the action credibility unlike "actors" like Sylvester Stallone or Steven Segal. You genuinely believe that he could be able to shoot someone with a sniper rifle at a distance of 1 - 2 kilometers.

All in all a movie where basically everything works and is perhaps underrated by the voters of IMDb.

9/10 - watch this movie right now!


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

6 March 1987 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Lethal Weapon See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,829,949, 8 March 1987

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)| Dolby Digital (5.1)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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