“Lethal Weapon” (1987) – OK, Richard Donner’s buddy cop movie – set in sunny Los Angeles – does include plenty of Christmas references, including Bobby Helms’ “Jingle Bell Rock” during the opening credits and police officer Martin Riggs (Mel Gibson) going undercover to buy drugs and a Christmas tree. Still, when one thinks of action films and Christmas, most look to “Die Hard” (1988), so that’s why we are including “Lethal Weapon” on this list.
Sergeant Roger Murtaugh (Danny Glover) pairs up with the nearly (or actually) psychotic Riggs, and they dive into a case of heroin smuggling and money laundering that gets personal once Murtaugh’s daughter is kidnapped. Glover and Gibson share good cop/crazy cop chemistry, and Shane Black’s script includes clever gunplay and welcome laughs, as Murtaugh and Riggs slowly bond and realize that they form a great team.
Just to note, Murtaugh may or may not invite Riggs for the world’s worse Christmas turkey dinner at the end of the film. If you don’t remember, well, catch “Lethal Weapon” again.
(Available on Netflix DVD, Amazon Streaming and iTunes)
⭐⭐⭐ 1/2 out of ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Image credits: Warner Bros.; Trailer credits: Movieclips Classic Trailers