This being the first Monday morning of our Christmas movie advent calendar what better way to start off the week than with a bit of action! Behind door number three this morning we have the ultimate Buddy-Cop movie, Lethal Weapon.
You may be wondering how exactly this can be classed as a Christmas movie. With murder, explosions, Mel Gibson’s lions mane of hair and Danny Glover’s constant complaints of being ‘too old for this shit’ it’s quite true to say that it doesn’t have the most Christmassy of feelings. However, just like yesterdays Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, the events of Lethal Weapon just happen to coincide with the festive season. Not only do we have ‘Jingle Bell Rock’ welcoming us into the opening credits, but we also have enough characters saying ‘Merry Christmas’ to remind us that Santa’s on his way. If that doesn’t give it credibility as a Christmas movie then I don’t know what does! Plus it gives us another reason to rewatch the classic or, if you haven’t seen it, finally give it a try. Not that a reason is needed to be honest.
Even though it’s full to the brim with clichés – Danny Glover’s Murtagh having just turned fifty and being assigned to recently widowed Riggs (Gibson) who just happens to be a loose canon, stop me if you’ve heard this before, folks – it’s still a treat to watch. With Shane Black’s dialogue it’s not as interesting as Kiss Kiss Bang Bang but you can easily tell it’s got the same man behind Kiss Kiss Bang Bang behind it and you can bet your bottom dollar it’s easily more quotable.
Instead of going down the usual Christmas movie route of everything’s hunky-dory and ‘aww look at the cute little puppy there’ we’re instead given another side to the Christmas season. With two suicide attempts occurring before the opening half hour is complete. And then another not much later on in the film. The differences between Riggs’ lonely life and Murtagh’s happy and fulfilling family life it’s easy to say where the film is heading. Yet it’s not to be approached as your average clichéd Buddy Cop movie. It’s a classic and should be seen as such.
We do have another murder mystery to solve just like we did yesterday with Kiss Kiss Bang Bang and the storyline isn’t as engaging, however that’s not really why we should watch this. The two main reasons we should enjoy ourselves for the next two hours (or the next hour and fifty minutes if you want to get all technical) are pretty much staring you in the face most of the time. Riggs and Murtagh’s chemistry on screen is a marvellous thing to watch and it’s one of the main reasons I’m sure that we were blessed with three sequels!
Join me tomorrow for day four and as usual, your thoughts and comments are very welcome down below.