Lethal Weapon 3

tn_lethalweapon3LETHAL WEAPON 3 is the third one in the series in my opinion so it brings with it certain baggage, but also certain strengths. On the negative side, it feels more concerned with satisfying sequel expectations than with actually telling a good story. Even more than the other two it feels more like a list of ideas strung together than a story. Oh, we gotta bring Leo back, he should be bleach blond and act all Hollywood and stuff, that would be funny. And Murtaugh should be trying to sell his house and they try to not mention to prospective buyers that a bunch of deadly battles took place there! Oh yeah, Leo could be the real estate agent. That’s it! And Murtaugh should be retiring soon so he’s all worried he’s gonna get shot, ’cause he realizes how it works in movies! But then it’s Leo that gets shot, he’s okay but he gets all high and mighty about it, saying he got shot in the line of duty. You know how Leo is. Murtaugh should bond with a son this time, not just Rianne. Something about guns in the black community. Oh, and explosions. Bigger than before. One of those “the red wire or the green wire?” scenes could be fun. Who should be Riggs’s new girl? How ’bout a girl cop? You think she’s uptight, ’cause she’s internal affairs, but then she knows how to kickbox!

In fact, it’s alot like a series of skits. The one where Riggs gets past a guard dog by getting down on his knees, making dog noises and eating dog biscuits with him (he actually flips the dog so it helps him get away and leaves with him). The one where a Michael Bay style sassy overweight black lady (Broadway star Delores Hall) gets involved with a car chase and says funny stuff (she starts courting Murtaugh and says suggestive things to him while he cowers hiding behind a desk). The one where Riggs and the lady cop Lorna Cole (Renee Russo) strip their clothes off to excitedy show off their scars (they end up sleeping together and making lovey-dovey eyes at each other during shootouts).

[By the way, these scar-showing competitions we see in movies are weird. How do they have the discipline to start with the smallest ones and work their way up? Who is that strategic about it? You’d think almost anybody would just jump to the big guns.]

mp_lethalweapon3In general all this is trying way harder to be funny than the first two in the series, but missing way more often. For example Pesci, who I thought had a funny character last time, starts turning more into the grating shtick he became known for post-GOODFELLAS.

Of course that’s a big drawback. But on the positive side, by the time of part 3 I really like these characters and their relationships, so it’s fun to just see them again, hear them bicker, see them get into different types of trouble. It’s nice to see Murtaugh’s family again, see the comradery and joking around in the office again, the way the other cops enjoy and aid in Riggs’s fucking with Murtaugh. When Murtaugh tries to sell his house we know the history of it including the car that went through the side, the threatening note on the Christmas tree, the duel with Gary Busey on the lawn, the bomb that blew up the upstairs toilet, the nail gun fight in the attic. It’s meaningful when Riggs covers for Murtaugh’s accidental gun discharge in the locker room by throwing a tantrum. They just think it’s crazy Riggs, but it’s partner Riggs. And it’s especially meaningful when Riggs tells Murtaugh how his retirement will affect his life, the one he was gonna give up until they started working together. It’s actually sad.

Also they build on the events of previous installments. Riggs has lost two loves because of his cases, now he has one who’s a cop too, and can protect herself. He’s been saved by a vest before, now it’s a new ball game because their case is about armor piercing bullets.

In the first one the Murtaughs had an anti-apartheid sticker on their refrigerator, now they have “Fur is Dead” and one of the daughters wears a pro-choice shirt. But the left wing messages aren’t just a family characteristic, they also put an anti-fur message on a big semi trailer that gets crashed into. I don’t know why it would be on there. It only makes sense as a not-so-subliminal message. Wait a minute… Richard Donner is the “liberal media” we’re always hearing about, isn’t he?

That would be funny if the bad guys were fur trappers, but it’s closer to a MAGNUM FORCE type plot where they put the supercops up against corrupt ones. The issue it’s concerned with is the proliferation of guns. They never talk about changing laws, they just lament that these things exist and get out on the streets and into kids’ hands. There’s actually a cop stealing guns from the evidence lockers and selling them to a street dealer.

Of course, our boys still love guns. They’re always running around, jumping to the ground, doing rolls and firing off as many rounds as time and supply allows. But they’re special – not just because they’re cops, but because they’re Murtaugh and Riggs. There’s a young cop, just turned 22, excellent shot on the gun range, always begging to come along with them for some action. They finally say yes and maybe two or three minutes later he’s shot dead. Normal humans can’t hang with Murtaugh and Riggs. Except for Leo, who goes with them on a chase at a hockey coliseum (a cool set piece). They run out onto the ice but don’t join the game like Van Damme did in SUDDEN DEATH.

One of the major events of the movie is that Murtaugh kills a kid who points a gun at him, then realizes it’s his son’s friend. He feels so bad about it that he insists on – inappropriately in my opinion but I’m not Miss Manners – showing up at the funeral. The kid’s mom slaps him, but the parents are with it enough to look at the big picture and tell him to go after the man that put a gun in their son’s hand.

Murtaugh gets really upset, depressed and drunk about the whole thing. He blames himself until Riggs changes the topic to how bad the retirement is for him. Weirdly, nobody ever points out that if Riggs hadn’t seen and run after those kids in the first place they wouldn’t have pulled a gun and nobody would’ve been shot. I mean, he was just doing his job, but if Murtaugh feels guilty about what went down then Riggs should too. Was it really worth it?

Part 3 is definitely more forced than the others. Would they really still hang out with an obnoxious mob trial witness they protected three years ago? Is it really cute for an internal affairs officer to headbutt a guy and lock him in a trunk for asking for a warrant? And there’s a whole lot of looped dialogue to add a joke or exposition as they walk off the set or drive to a new location. It’s patched together kinda sloppily. Or, uh, they’re just riffin like jazz musicians I guess you could say.

This time, by the way, the stringing together was done completely without Shane Black. Instead it was the Murtaugh & Riggs team of Jeffrey Boam (who took over the writing on part 2, but also wrote STRAIGHT TIME, INDIANA JONES AND THE LAST CRUSADE and THE PHANTOM) and Robert Mark Kamen (known for THE KARATE KID trilogy, but also writer of a ton of Luc Besson productions from THE FIFTH ELEMENT and THE TRANSPORTER to TAKEN and COLOMBIANA). Maybe that’s why it doesn’t quite have that same edge to it as the first two.

But I’m not blaming them. This kinda exemplifies the excesses of action movie sequels, and also why they’re fun. I’m gonna go ahead and say it’s the worst one, but oh hell, I still enjoyed it for what it was.

This entry was posted on Wednesday, January 8th, 2014 at 1:48 pm and is filed under Action, Reviews. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

45 Responses to “Lethal Weapon 3”

  1. I wish I could partake in a scar-showing competition. My face has healed up & evenly re-tanned itself too much, so those scars are only visible if you look hard, and the scars on my hand are too small to be impressive even though they have cool stories behind them.

    My biggest scar is on my left [gluteus] cheek, but yeah I don’t know why I wouldn’t just immediately jump to displaying that one when I’m trying to impress & hook up with Rene Russo. She would be turned on by it in my opinion.

  2. Is it weird that I read this review but thought about wanting to read about Jet Li in the next (maybe/hopefully) review?

  3. Vern, after all these years covering cops & soldiers in movies, you should know: “accidental gun discharge”

  4. I miss old Mel. And Dick Donner. Man, I love Dick.

  5. Really liked the Sting song. This one did not perform as well as expected, apart from reasons Vern listed I think it was also because so soon after the LA riots this film came out that just winked at LA police brutality, lets pretend to shoot a guy for jaywalking, ha ha. During the chase sequence the windshield is shot off the police motorcycle and gows back, Mel changes from boots to sneakers and back to boots again. Weakest of the four but ok, I remember the crowds went crazy in the cinema for the first two, this one, hardly anyone was there and we all just walked out.

  6. I remember very little about Lethal Weapon 3, except the final shoot out where Murtaugh (I think) has to use the armor piercing bullets to shoot through a bulldozer that’s trying to crush him. I do remember thinking that it was strange that Pesci’s character returned. He was definitely shoe horned into the film without much reason. Die Hard 2 was also guilty of including characters for little reason other than the fact that they appeared in the first movie. Like most I like Al Powell’s cameo in Die Hard 2, because it’s a nice throw back, but the return of the news reporter is a scar on the film.

    It’s been a long time since I’ve watched this series, so I just now headed over to Netflix to see if I could at least get these movies on DVD, and surprisingly they only have the first movie to rent. What the hell, Netflix?

  7. I remembered this as a pretty generic movie. Like each time I’ve watched it, I keep forgetting what actually happened in it or who the (forgettable as fuck) villain was, except in the direct bits Vern mentions that do jog some sort of story.

    In fact I think this has the problem for me of not actually having a story. Sure Mel gets a girl, and they tried to make a story with Glover shooting that kid, but they’re subplots to the major plot…which LW3 doesn’t have. That might explain why LW3 feels like a series of skits for Vern. I mean I have problems with LW4, but at least there’s some sort of plot involving human trafficking and the Triads for everything else to hang off from.

  8. The guy who plays the villain (Stuart Wilson) was Sigourney Weaver’s husband in DEATH AND THE MAIDEN, and the town doctor in HOT FUZZ. Was also in NO ESCAPE, THE ROCK, ENEMY OF THE STATE, and perhaps more embarrassingly TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES 3 and EXIT TO EDEN.

  9. The Original... Paul

    January 8th, 2014 at 6:09 pm


    “One of those “the red wire or the green wire?” scenes could be fun.”

    C’mon, you could’ve thrown me a bone and pointed out that this is a “Juggernaut” parody. Just like the ones in “Sky High”, “Rush Hour”, “Naked Gun 2”, and even (am I remembering this right?) “Fight Club”. And probably a hundred other films.

    But while I’m up for anything that reminds me of “Juggernaut”, this scene always kinda bothered me. It wasn’t that I didn’t think Riggs would risk killing HIMSELF – he would absolutely do that – but that he’d risk taking both Murtaugh and a cat with him.

    Nobody’s mentioned the villain, which is hardly surprising. I believe his name was “Travis”. Other than that I couldn’t tell you a damn thing about him. I think it’s a good time to introduce you guys to a new ratings system that I came up with two minutes ago for rating how much “fun” the villains are. It would go something like this:

    5) Alan Rickman in “Die Hard” – evil bastard and loving it.
    4) Cage / Travolta in “Face Off” – manic-depressive, but with an extra slice of manic for good measure.
    3) Tommy Lee Jones in “Under Siege” – can fake enthusiasm but is alive to the grim realities of what he’s doing.
    2) Michael Caine in “On Deadly Ground” – grumpy bastard who doesn’t even bother to pretend that he’s not shitting on everybody else.
    1) James Woods in “The Specialist” – does this guy ever even crack a smile?

    …And given the films I’ve chosen, there’s really no question of which end of that scale I prefer my villains to inhabit, is there? Travis has got to rate a 1.5 at best. He’s just so unmemorable. There’s nothing about him that’s interesting.

    The villains of the “Lethal Weapon” series were definitely not its focal point, but I’ve always preferred the guys in #2 myself. Joss Ackland is such a bastard, and the mercenary (can’t remember his name, but the guy from Riggs’ past) is a convincing and effective antagonist for Mel. I also love the way that the actor plays him – one of those soft-spoken but menacing villain turns that it takes skill to pull off. (Jai Courtney did this kind of character really well in “Jack Reacher” last year.) Gary Busey and Jet Li both give effective turns in their respective films, so it’s really LW3 that lets the side down in my opinion.

  10. The Original... Paul

    January 8th, 2014 at 6:11 pm

    Ok, now RRA has mentioned the villain and “ninja’d” me. Although his point was basically the same as mine, I think.

  11. I got a weird “Jaws” vibe when I recently rewatched LW3. You have the scar comparison scene, obviously. But there’s also the scene where the mom of the gangbanger slaps Murtaugh; it seems a lot like when Mrs Kintner slaps Brody.

    But then its LW4 that has an actual shark, so what do I know?

  12. For years I was convinced that the villain was played by Ted Levine. It was just during my last viewing a few years ago, that I realized it wasn’t him.
    Still, the most memorable thing about his was the moment, where he drowns that guy in concrete.

  13. LW 3 is the Shemp Howard of the Lethal Weapon series (and using that train of thought: 1= Moe, 2= Curly, 4= Larry). ‘Nuff said.

    But let’s give credit where credit is due, and that’s to Rene Russo. The period of her career from ’89 to ’99, she clicked with nearly EVERY leading man she was paired with: Tom Berenger, Mel Gibson, Clint Eastwood, Dustin Hoffman, John Travolta, Kevin Costner, Pierce Brosnan, and (yes, it must be said) Buddy The Gorilla. For a woman so attractive, she always seemed readily approachable rather than standoffish, and maybe that was the key to her versatility.

  14. The opening title song is great and it has some great charactermoments and action sequences, but as Paul and RRA mentioned the villainy is disposable and generic. Yoúr Lethal Weaponry is only as good as the villain you go up against and sadly no personal stake was in it and I think it is its biggest flaw.

    But it has some great action and character moments. The up-scaled silliness might turn people off, but since I love these characters so much I have little problem with having them goof around. Good stuff. it is certainly much funnier than LOADED WEAPON 1.

  15. LOADED WEAPON 1 is definitely only semi watchable, because of certain things you can see Sam Jackson do only in that movie.

  16. “nothing, just takin’ a shit!”

  17. The Undefeated Gaul

    January 9th, 2014 at 2:33 am

    I think Loaded Weapon is actually one of the funnier spoof comedies of that time. Doesn’t reach Naked Gun or Hot Shots levels of fun but certainly a lot better than crap like Fatal Instinct and The Silence Of The Hams.

  18. I don’t know, you’re being too generous. The first two were fine, 3 & 4 were fucking horrible, like rich movie stars taking millions without giving us actual movies. I actually walked out of 4 in the theater when I saw it was just more of the same as 3. I winced reading your review when reminded of all the horrible stuff in 3 that I had long forgotten about.

    Why you were so generous to this dreadful piece of ^%$$ is beyond me, lol. But I’ll survive!

  19. I actually wrote this rant on imdb (back when I went there) about how the villain is not just forgettable but also kind of terribly conceived and written –

    – his “origin” story makes no sense – the captain says he was a brutal cop who just DISAPPEARED while getting coffee on stakeout?? So was he just living “off the grid” the last few years? Did he change his identity or something? And good thing the LAPD doesn’t seem to worry too much about it’s cops possibly being kidnapped or dead or anything.

    – his master plan of raiding the police lockup over and over kinda goes out the window when he pointlessly shoots a cop for no reason and then leaves the dead body in the evidence locker. Not sure how he expected to keep this plan going after that.

    – he never really goes one on one with Riggs. I mean, he sorta does for two seconds, but when LW 1 and 2 end with great hand to hand fights (especially the first one), it’s a giant letdown. Then again, everyone and their mother kicked Riggs’ ass in this movie, so maybe it’s a good thing.

    – every damn line he says is a one-liner/pun. “we need a relationship we can BUILD on” “It’s a DEAD issue” “c’mon in, b**ch, the door’s open” “here’s your department funeral, Riggs!!” Who is he, James Bond?

    – Speaking of Bond, his last scene involving the bulldozer and the cop-killer bullets was fun, but was a total Bond villain moment, not a LW one, no? All i know is that if i was fighting Riggs who was knocked out cold surrounded by flames, i could come up with a few easier ways of dispatching him than jumping into a bulldozer and slowly trying to run him over.

    And by the way, anyone find it weird that Travis was supposed to be a huge badass on the LAPD but Murtaugh and Riggs never heard of him? Even Lorna, who’s freaking Internal Affairs doesn’t seem to know of him till the Captain plays Mr. Exposition to us. I think it would have made a little more sense if the heroes at least knew OF him, or if he was still an active dirty cop, at least for the beginning of the movie.

    But on the bright side, kudos I guess for not trying to repeat the “now it’s personal” seriousness of the baddies in 1+2. I mean there’s that subplot about Murtaugh’s son’s friend but Travis mostly keeps his distance- after all, he does hold the distinction of being the only LW weapon villain to NOT invade the Murtaugh house (which was just brought to my attention that it’s the Griswold house from Christmas Vacation – how did I never notice that??)

  20. Oh and as for the movie itself, I absolutely hated most of it when I saw it in the theater, but those last two action sequences were incredible when I was a kid. What I wouldn’t give for a wrong-way freeway motorcycle chase or a shootout in a burning building today. And that credit cookie (probably the first one I remember seeing) blew my mind – just the fact that the film’s biggest explosion was positioned after the credits where maybe 1/10 of the audience would see it was amazing to me (I think they just filmed a building already set to be demolished, but it was still impressive nonetheless)

  21. You guys are right about the villains in this movie. I feel like I’ve seen it at least five times, and I remember the hockey scene, the opening, the part where he shoots his son’s friend. But the end, to me still, just seems like a random gunfight with faceless bad dudes. Without a doubt this is the worst one in the series. One of my least favorite Part 3s out there, actually

  22. Jim, and you’re going too far the other way. “Fucking horrible dreadful piece of ^%$$” is just a tad too much. Or to be equally over the top; fucking insane!

    I read somewhere that they were hoping that DeNiro would play Jack Travis. Perhaps that’s why the character isn’t properly fleshed out. They were counting on him to give it some life. Now we all know that Stuart Wilson could have done that also, but someone (Donner?) must have held him back.

    Gaul, I would say that LOADED WEAPON 1is better than the first HOT SHOTS. Mostly because they got the right son of Sheen in the lead. And the scene with John McClane is really, really good.

  23. Jareth Cutestory

    January 9th, 2014 at 8:01 am

    I’m not going to be that guy who reminds Vern that a certain HBO show is unsurpassed in its depiction office camaraderie and pranks among cops, not to mention the master class in bickering held each week by the Bunk. Or Herc and Carver. Shit, this is more difficult than not showing you off my scars.

  24. When this first came out I loved it because I was so happy to have a bad ass woman in an action movie. Then as I matured and we got better/more bad ass women in action movies I came to realize how not great this one was. It’s okay, but it could’ve been better.

    Crazy Mel also started to grate on me a little. There was a reason for it in the first one – he was suicidal and didn’t give a shit. Now that he’s got it together and has a family with the Murtaughs it started to feel forced.

    All that said, I do feel like Vern and still kinda enjoy it.

  25. That’s a good point, Maggie, when this movie came out Rene Russo seemed pretty cool. I actually found myself pretty powerfully attracted to her at the time and I think it had a lot to do with her seriousness and her strength. She’s peers with these dudes, not just some South African chick written in to fuck and die. Another good one (at the time, I dunno, I haven’t seen this shit in over a decade) with her and Mel was Ransom and when that movie was new, I was thinking, Sweet! Reteamed! That’s fuckin weird to think about now, because what the hell has Rene Russo been doing all these years? Think last time I saw her in a movie it was the Thomas Crown Affair, back in the 90s

  26. Randy – The ads don’t show it but Russo plays Thor’s mom in both Thor movies (re-teamed with Freejack costar Anthony Hopkins). She weirdly has almost no close-ups or dialogue in Thor 1 (and almost all of it as ADR’d), but she has a much bigger part in Thor 2, including a pretty good fight scene. In fact, her expanded role is one of the few things about the sequel I liked better than the first one.

  27. “That’s fuckin weird to think about now, because what the hell has Rene Russo been doing all these years? Think last time I saw her in a movie it was the Thomas Crown Affair, back in the 90s.”

    Right after the Thomas Crown Affair she was Natasha in The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle, which bombed big time and got her nominated for a Razzie. Then she was in forgettable fare like Showtime with De Niro and Eddie Murphy, and Two for the Money with Pacino. And then she turned 50, and as rare as it was for a woman to be getting leading lady parts in her 40’s, it’s unheard of for a woman in her 50’s. Since then she’s been Thor’s mom, and that’s about all that I remember.

  28. The Original... Paul

    January 9th, 2014 at 12:41 pm

    Maggie – I think I agree with everything you’ve said, especially this:

    “Crazy Mel also started to grate on me a little. There was a reason for it in the first one – he was suicidal and didn’t give a shit. Now that he’s got it together and has a family with the Murtaughs it started to feel forced.”

    That was specifically the problem with the opening scene. I don’t think it’s as bad as all that because after all Riggs did get some serious character regression after [SPOILER] his new kitten gets offed [/SPOILER]. But I don’t think even Riggs from late on in the first movie would put Murtaugh in danger in the way that Riggs from LW3 did at its opening.

    Pegsman – I don’t agree with Jim but I can definitely sympathise with his point of view. Just like I can sympathise with, say, Asimov’s opinion on “Prometheus”. In the end I thought the film came off ok despite the flaws that he pointed out; but if those flaws in particular really annoy you, you’re going to have problems with the film generally.

  29. That’s because he’s not being suicidal; he’s being selfish. He’s losing his mind over Roger’s retirement, both because he’s worried that he’ll lose his new family if Roger isn’t forced to see him every day, and because he’s secretly scared that he’ll revert to his old behavior without Roger’s grounding influence. So with the whole red wire/blue wire thing, he’s trying to convince Murtaugh to change his mind by showing him all the fun he’ll be missing. Of course, Riggs’ idea of fun is running halfcocked into dangerous situations and barely escaping with his life. So it’s kind of a self-fulfilling prophecy: He’s scared of becoming the old him when Roger leaves, so he becomes the old him in an attempt to convince him to stay. He’s not being a very good friend/partner here, but I believe it. He’s coming from a place of desperation and pain that he can’t even admit to himself until late in the movie. His manic side is coming out in full force to keep his depressive side at bay, because that’s the side that convinces him to play Russian Roulette with an automatic instead of funneling his death wish into cop work.

    The weird thing is that Riggs’ plan works. Roger doesn’t retire, even though Riggs finds someone else to keep him in line and share his adventures with. So Roger’s not doing it for Riggs. It’s not the first or last time that Roger has had the chance to take the easy way out and stay out of danger. I guess deep down he’s a lethal weapon too.

  30. I agree with everything Mr Majestyk says and that is why the series works for me simply because I think the underlining psychology behind the characters is more thought out than it get credit for. But also because I have grown to love these guys.

  31. It is going to be interesting to read Verns review of LW4. From the progressive anti-apartheid politics of part 2 to BREAKFAST AT TIFFANY´S .

  32. onthewall2983- What’s really embarrassing is that Wilson was actually a much better villain in TURTLES III than he was here. That sounds like a ridiculous hipster opinion, but I’ll stand by it

  33. I love all of the LW´s, but I most def get why people has a problem with part 4.

  34. Wilson was a good villain in THE MASK OF ZORRO. A much better villain than in LW3

  35. Okay, Majestyk, I’ll buy that reasoning for his wackiness. I still agree with Vern that they’re trying too hard to be funny and pushing his wackiness for that effect.

  36. I agree that this one is the most unfocused in the series. Without a strong villain, there’s no real urgency to the plot, so the film meanders from character showcase to action set-piece without much forward momentum. LW4 has the most embarrassing lapses in judgment and taste, but at least at the end there’s a force of nature like Jet Li waiting to make everyone get serious. Neither the third or fourth tell particularly good stories but, like Shoot, I just love these characters, so any chance I get to spend some time with them is alright with me. I’d actually love to see one more, where Riggs is about to retire and Murtaugh joins him for one last case. Mel could use an opportunity to show audiences that wacky, lovable side that has made so many of his friends and costars stick by him through his descent into madness.

  37. A fifth one if the audience would buy into it would be if Riggs and Murtaugh both be retired and had to jump back into the action and save Riggs kid who also have become a cop from a bad situation. I know timewise that kid would be no more than 15, but with a little suspension of disbelief it perhaps could work.

  38. Shoot – Breakfast at Tiffany’s is a pretty appropriate comparison. Yet, as an a) Asian and a b) lover of good movies, I’m ashamed to like LW4 as much as I do (which is not much, but I don’t outright hate it like I should). That says more about my love of the characters than I do for the actual content of the movie. Speaking of which, even though I prefer the Die Hard series, I’d argue that the LW series has a more consistent look, tone, feel and characters, obviously a byproduct of keeping the same director (Donner) and producer (Joel Silver, who left the DH series after 2 which is probably why 3-5 don’t really feel the same as 1-2). I mean, sure, Riggs and Murtaugh change, sometimes not in ways we like, but they still feel like the same characters.

    Also, is that first pic at the top of the review from the Lethal Weapon 3 pinball game? The one with the gun on it and the shooting minigames? Probably my favorite pinball game ever.

  39. What an incredible villain Jet Li is in LW4. He says very little, yet his face is full of evil shit going on. He emote so much just with his eyes. Jet Li certainly is underestimated as an actor in my opinion.. His face is also kind of weathered like an asian Charlkes Bronson which does him no harm in my opinion.

  40. The Undefeated Gaul

    January 9th, 2014 at 4:26 pm

    Agreed on Jet Li being a fantastic villain in LW4. It was actually the first time I saw the guy and I was just blown away. After that I tried to get my hands on anything he was in. Also, he was so good at being a villain that I was disappointed he waited until 2007 until he did it again… and that was in Rogue/War/Rogue Assassin where he turned out to not actually be the villain. And then he finally played a real villain again, but it was in The Mummy: Tomb Of The Dragon Emperor…

    Ah well, it makes his performance in LW4 all the more special and I will cherish it forever.

  41. Wilson was really great in NO ESCAPE too.

  42. caruso_stalker217

    January 10th, 2014 at 1:19 am


  43. Like most people my age (shut up, Shoot) I first noticed Wilson in THE SWEENEY, then RETURN OF THE SAINT, IVANHOE and finally WE’LL MEET AGAIN, where he played the scoundrel uncle Sid. And in our house he’s been uncle Sid since then. “Uncle Sid’s fighting Zorro, kids!” Great actor. Actually, when I saw LW3 in London in ’92, people cheered when he first popped up.

  44. Now you gotta review part IV, man.

  45. This is the only LW movie I dislike. My 80s/90s self thought that LW1 and LW2 were about the best action movies ever (now I’d rate them as “good”). My 00s self thought LW4 was reasonably fun(and I still do). But I didn’t like LW3 when it came out, and I don’t like it today.

    It was such an underwhelming follow-up to 2. In 2, we had an army of South Africans with diplomatic immunity, one of whom killed Riggs’s wife. That is some bad ass villainy. But in 3, the villain was pretty uninteresting and seemed unthreatening. He wasn’t above the law like the bad guys in 2, nor was he a deadly psycho like Mr. Joshua in part 1. He was just a garden variety crook, really. His scheme didn’t make much sense either. Can you really make a lasting criminal enterprise out of stealing guns from police lockers? Isn’t he bound to get caught by a desk clerk eventually? You don’t need a Riggs and Murtaugh to take this guy on. This is a job for some of those other cops in the background.

    And I always felt like the comedy fell flat in this one. Vern hit it on the head: it plays like a series of skits. Left me cold. But I will say that everybody else seemed to like it. I remember that of the group I saw it with, I was the only spoilsport who bitched and moaned.

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