Monday, January 07, 2008

Lethal Weapon and Heroes in Hard Times

Lethal Weapon goes against many of the "buddy cop" films, by reversing the racial positions of the two cops.  Roger Murtaugh, played by Danny Glover, is a veteran cop, who is given a new partner, Martin Riggs.  Murtaugh is a father of three with a beautiful wife, living in a nice home, and even has a cat.  They present him with the perfect family, and loving home life.  This is different from way most African Americans are portrayed on screen. At first he is not fond of his new partner who he believes he is crazy.  Riggs is suicidal and is known to surprise everyone with his reckless ways of doing his job.  Murtaugh is a few years away from retiring, and finds himself in more life threatening situations than ever before.  Lethal Weapon seems to have mixed up the racial stereotypes of the two characters.  The white cop is more popular to have a loving family, kids, home, and all that comes along with the perfect homelife.  Though they come from different lifestyles, the two cops soon become a dynamic duo is the investigation of Amanda Hunsacker's death.  Soon Riggs, who before had to find reasons to live each day, finds a friend in Murtaugh and gives him the bullet which was meant for his suicide.  In the end, Riggs is invited for Christmas dinner at the Murtaugh's house, and brings his dog to be friends with the family cat, and immediately the sounds of them fighting are being heard, this is a replay of the beginning of the relationship between the now best friends. 


Blogger Hayden Cadwalader said...

I agree with Paige on some aspects, but disagree that "Lethal Weapon" goes against the classic buddy cop movie. Though the traditional roles are reversed, where Murtaugh is the wealthy one and Riggs lives in a trailer, it is not always such where the white cop lives a happy, family oriented life. Many cop films, even Die Hard, the first, where McClain works with a black officer to save the hostages, McClain is distanced from his divorced wife and daughter, and the black officer has a family and wife and lives happily.

6:25 PM  
Blogger Vladigogo said...

Well, Al Powell seems to be a happy guy with a pregnant wife, but we do find out that he is no longer a real cop but instead a desk cop because he shot a kid when he was on the street. So he too is troubled.

9:17 PM  

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