Essay on Lethal Weapon 4, by Richard Donner

1633 Words 7 Pages
As muscle-bound figures such as the Terminator and Rambo stormed big screen, it was also during this period that we witnessed the ostensive arrival of “racially sensitive” buddy cop films. Lethal Weapon 4 (1998) directed by Richard Donner is a buddy cop film, which portrays a more subtle ‘modern’ type of racism. In saying so, the film examines inter-racial relationships attempting to diminish racial issues and present characters with equity in order to give comfort and reassurance to a wider ethnic audience. With calls for more minority representation on screen, black-white interracial buddying seemed to make political and financial sense to Hollywood studios (Chan 110). However, minority representation on screen presented a much more …show more content…
The three dimentional design of the characters present figures with focal concerns well beyond race and racism by characters leading lives that appear to be complex and conflicted thus representing a more ‘real’ life scenario making the question of race an over determined one.

Racism hasn’t disappeared. In fact it’s more apparent in new levels, which seems less visible to those whom choose to believe so. Racism is a sensitive issue, yet as Lee Artz states the apparent equality of black and white characters plants a belief in a non-black member of community to think that “racism has been overcome”. By placing Murtaugh’s family to a percentile of an upper-middle class of the society and Riggs to a working class, social stereotypical norms of both races are distorted. Not only are these characters equal, but Murtaugh seems to be of higher class than Riggis. However, Rigg’s life which doesn’t mold into a stereotypical White frame tends to frame him as the “Social Other”, displacing him outside the ‘White’ superiority. Inter-racial buddy films propel a comforting message to the blacks, which enables one to be more accepting of existing social conditions whilst comforting the White.. However, one must also consider that one type of representation may stimulate a new stereotype, abandoning the non-represented majority. Although Murthough belongs to an upper-middle class of the society, he lives in a white neigbourhood, a life which would

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