It looks like Martin Riggs and Roger Murtaugh aren't too old for this shit after all. That's right, folks, almost twenty years after the LAPD's most deadly cops took down the Chinese triad, it seems that Mel Gibson, Danny Glover and director Richard Donner may finally gear up for Lethal Weapon 5. Get your guns and witty banter ready, because these aging cops are going to need them.
The thought of bringing Riggs and Murtaugh back for another case will almost certainly get many fans excited, but it also raises some concerns. After all, long-awaited sequels don't have the best track record in Hollywood. This becomes even more worrisome when we consider the fact that (critically speaking) the series is actually one of the more consistent properties in Hollywood, and went out on a high note in Lethal Weapon 4. With that in mind, let's dive in and discuss how the folks behind Lethal Weapon 5 can craft a fifth installment that's worthy of the previous four.
Pay Homage To The Previous Films...
The Lethal Weapon films are notably distinct from many other franchises of a similar ilk because these movies do stack on top of each other. Every subsequent film refers to the others, and a mythology develops as a result. Even in Lethal Weapon 3, we get a scene in which Riggs shows us the scars that he has developed over the course of his relationship with Roger. While we certainly want to see Lethal Weapon tell a story that's accessible to newcomers to the franchise, we also want to know how the injuries and traumas of the last four films have informed and changed our heroes.
...But Don't Recycle Old Bits
With that said, we have also seen what can happen when films focus way too much on fan service and fail to tell a new story. There's no question that we want to know how all four Lethal Weapon movies have built to the events of Lethal Weapon 5, but we also don't want to see yet another "on three, or one, two, three, go?" bit used just because most of the other Lethal Weapons used it. It has been almost twenty years since Riggs and Murtaugh were last seen on the silver screen together; they will almost certainly have new jokes and gags ready for us.