In “Scream 2”, when these film students are arguing about sequels, they’re way off the track. They seem to settle on “The Godfather part 2” as the best sequel ever, but they don’t even mention “Lethal Weapon 2”. For once, a sequel that ain’t just a lame rehashing of the original. In fact, “LW 2” is a much better film than its predecessor. It’s smarter, funnier and more action-packed. The only thing lacking is Mel Gibson’s suicidal tendencies. But then again, even though Gibson generally shows a more charming side, he still loses it and get on a killing rampage by the end.
Through the series, the most exceptional thing is probably the relationship between the characters. It’s undeniable that Mel Gibson and Danny Glover form one of the best duos Hollywood has ever created. They have incredible chemistry together. Gibson plays Martin Riggs, a wild, reckless cop, while Glover is Roger Murtaugh, a fiftysomething loving husband and father who just wants to do his job. The first flick was about how two real different guys could become buddies, and in the sequel, their unlikely friendship explored further, and it’s so enjoyable! Male bonding doesn’t get any better: they laugh, they argue, they save each other’s ass… There’s even an emotional near-death scene.! We could worry that their pairing would grow thin with time, but the filmmakers had the good idea to bring in a new element, the hilarious Leo Getz, a small and whiny money launder interpreted by the always enjoyable Joe Pesci.
Oh, and by the way, this is an action film. Riggs and Murtaugh are on the track of a bunch of Dutch diplomats who deal illegally gold in South Africa, or whatever. Our heroes won’t let go until they stop those bastards. The film is packed with kick ass action scenes. There are raucously fun chase scenes, as well as a load of inventive bomb scenes, led by the unforgettable toilet scene. Another thing that struck me is how much Richard Donner’s direction improved. He did a pretty good job on the first film, but the sequel’s shoot-outs and martial arts fights are even better crafted. From start to end, the film is as entertaining as it gets. It’s not just a sequel. It’s a refreshing new journey with these characters we love.