Lethal Weapon Collection (Blu-ray) Official AVSForum Review - AVS Forum
Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
post #1 of 12 Old 05-21-2012, 07:43 AM - Thread Starter
Blu-ray Reviewer
 
Ralph Potts's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Middletown NY
Posts: 8,975
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 52 Post(s)
Liked: 398
attachment.php?attachmentid=247070&d=1337460912
The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )

Film: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373692

Extras: attachment.php?attachmentid=109944&d=1210373692

Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )

83






Studio and Year: Warner - 1987, 1989, 1992, 1998
MPAA Rating: R
Feature running time: 109/114/118/ 127 minutes
Genre: Action/Thriller/Crime

Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: VC-1
Video Aspect: 1.85:1 (LW1), 2.40:1
Resolution: 1080p/24


Audio Format(s): English DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio, French/Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
Starring: Danny Glover, Mel Gibson, Joe Pesci, Rene Russo, Chris Rock, Jet Li, Gary Busey
Directed by: Richard Donner
Music by: Michael Kamen & Eric Clapton
Written by: Shane Black, Jeffrey Boam, Robert Mark Kamen, Channing Gibson
Region Code: A,B,C

Blu-ray Disc release Date: May 22, 2012







"Lethal in Blu"



Film Synopsis:

Lethal Weapon: Martin Riggs (Mel Gibson) is no ordinary cop. He's a Mad Max gone maniacal, a man whose killing expertise and suicidal recklessness make him a Lethal Weapon to anyone he works against. Or with. Roger Murtaugh (Danny Glover) is an easygoing homicide detective with a loving family, a big house and a pension he doesn't want to lose. Imagine Murtaugh's shock when he learns his new partner is a guy with nothing left to lose: wild-eyed, burnt-out Martin Riggs.

Lethal Weapon 2: Buddy-cops Martin Riggs and Murtaugh are back, trying to keep a key witness-and themselves-alive in Lethal Weapon 2. And exciting it is, from its breathless opening chase through L.A. streets to its raging gun-battle finale. In between, there's a six-story plummet from a window, a booby-trapped toilet, a Houdini-like underwater escape and the incredible destruction of a chic hillside stilt house.

Lethal Weapon 3: They're back in their most successful, most explosive, most hilarious smash hit yet. They come, they see, they kick butt in a caper that has LA police detectives Riggs (Gibson) and Murtaugh (Glover) ripping into a vicious crime ring dealing guns to the streets. Joe Pesci returns as shady ex-mob accountant Leo Getz, and Rene Russo ads a lethal kick as Internal Affairs investigator Lorna Cole, like Riggs a born risktaker. Risks are everywhere: a high-rise explodes into dust, a housing tract goes up like matchsticks, Riggs takes an 80-foot plunge on a motorcycle.

Lethal Weapon 4: Mel Gibson and Danny Glover return as buddy cops Riggs and Murtaugh, with Joe Pesci riding comedy shotgun as chatterbox Leo. Murtaugh is still the family man. Riggs is still the gonzo loose cannon and--what's this?--family man. His will he/won't he marriage to Cole (Rene Russo) is one of the new wrinkles in this powerhouse crowd-pleaser.



My Take:

I am a fan. I saw Lethal Weapon in the theater back in 1987 and was instantly hooked. Back then the buddy cop genre had very little representation but was blasted into orbit when Riggs and Murtaugh hit the scene. Lethal Weapon was edgy, clever and dynamic as it plied us with engaging action, wonderfully integrated heart/humor and two superbly drawn characters whose relationship would go on to spawn three sequels and the enduring devotion of hordes of fans the world over. Filled with classic lines and memorable moments it felt so fresh/entertaining and left audiences hankering for more of the loose cannon/by the book duo. Two years later with the release of Lethal Weapon 2 we got out wish. I can recall walking out of the theater and saying to my wife that I enjoyed it as much as the first film which for a sequel is a pretty rare thing. In Lethal Weapon 2 which features a story written by Shane Black (who penned LW) we find Riggs/Murtaugh at odds with more baddies although now they must also contend with the political system that the villains are hiding behind. Roger and Martin's relationship deepens and Joe Pesci's Leo Getz adds a bit more comedic flavor which never sullies the tone of the story. The action stills feels fresh, as does the humor and heart, all of which revolves around the stalwart friendship and airtight chemistry between Riggs/Murtaugh and Gibson/Glover.

Watching them now I still find Lethal Weapon and Lethal Weapon 2 highly entertaining and complimentary of one another (with the edge going to LW). The release of Lethal Weapon 3 made little sense to me so I skipped a visit to the theater. Catching it on home video my reaction to it as a fan was lukewarm at best. I felt as though the direction of the story began to depend a little too much on frivolous humor and rehashed action set to elements of crime drama that strayed a bit too far from plausibility. I hated the inane opening sequence where Riggs/Murtaugh venture into the building with the car bomb. The scene later where Riggs gets down on all four in the gun runners hideout and plays dog whisperer is embarrassing. Bringing Leo Getz back seems to add nothing legitimate to the proceedings. The introduction of Lorna Cole works and I like what Rene Russo brought to the role. Six years later comes Lethal Weapon 4 and I just felt that it was more of the same although I liked it better than the previous film. By this point in the series there is no real feeling of inspiration but the action isn't bad, especially in the second act, and watching Roger/Martin still proves entertaining enough.

The fact is that by Lethal Weapon 4 the franchise was simply out of steam and after LW 2 lost the edginess and dynamism that made the first two so much fun. Still, as a fan it is hard not to be drawn to them (meaning LW 3 & 4) even for glimpses of the innate moments/chemistry that made the earlier installments classics. All four films (LW 3 & 4 make their high definition debut) come together in this Blu-ray five disc Lethal Weapon Collection that features the original theatrical versions, and a host of previously released and new (U.S.) bonus material all of which comes housed in a standard multi-disc amaray style keep case which slips into a sturdy cardboard sleeve. Lethal Weapon is a beloved and highly successful film franchise (particularly the first two installments) with a timeless appeal that has endured over the 25 years since the first release. I am thrilled to now own it on Blu-ray and can't think of a better gift for the Lethal Weapon fan in your life than this five disc offering from Warner Home Video.

Here are my ratings of each of the films individually which is reflected in the combined rating at the top of this review:


Lethal Weapon: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373699
Lethal Weapon 2: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373699
Lethal Weapon 3: attachment.php?attachmentid=109943&d=1210373699
Lethal Weapon 4: attachment.php?attachmentid=109944&d=1210373699

Parental Guide:

The ratings are for violence, language and thematic material.






AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100 / EXCELLENT = 83-91 / GOOD = 74-82 / AVERAGE = 65-73 / BELOW AVERAGE = under 65

**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**


(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

Audio: 82



  • Dynamics: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Low frequency extension: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373692

  • Surround Sound presentation: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Clarity/Detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

  • Dialogue Reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692



Video: 84


(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)


  • Resolution/Clarity: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Black level/Shadow detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Color reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Fleshtones: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

  • Compression: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

The Lethal Weapon Collection comes to Blu-ray Disc from Warner Home Video featuring 1080p VC-1 encoded video and DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio sound. Lethal Weapon 1 &2 have an average video bit rate of 21 Mbps, Lethal weapon 3 has an average video bitrate of 25 Mbps and Lethal weapon 4 has an average video bitrate of 26 Mbps. Lethal weapon 1, 2, and 3 have an average audio bitrate of 2.2 Mbps and Lethal weapon 4 has an average audio bitrate of 2.7 Mbps.

These high definition presentations offer satisfying image quality that presents each of them in a positive light. Overall fidelity remains intact and while some look better than others the variations aren't such that it makes for a marked difference that negatively impacts the quality of the collection as a whole. In examining the quality of the source prints these are primarily in very good condition. Grain is intact throughout and primarily appears to be undisturbed. Rendering is occasionally inconsistent however this isn't attributable to the encoding and rarely rose to an objectionable level. I was impressed with the reproduction of fleshtones as complexions have good tonal depth, delineated highlights and lifelike texture. Color balance is excellent as both primary and secondary appear warm and natural. Colors aren't overly vibrant but are cleanly rendered with a pleasing level of saturation and depth. Blacks appear punchy with appreciable dynamic range that makes them pop while onscreen with both light and dark elements. Resolution and clarity is estimable although sharpness can be a bit inconsistent, this especially notable in the first two films. In most instances this appears innate and rarely infringes upon the perceivable fidelity of these presentations which make it less glaring. Shadow detail isn't always definitive but depth of field and low level transitions are generally perceivable which supplements dimension. I didn't see any signs of the application of unwanted noise reduction or excessive manipulation. Images are well resolved with discernible definition and fair rendering of fine detail during close up and mid level camera pans. I noticed some low level background noise here and there but otherwise saw no obvious signs of video related artifacts. Regardless of any shortcomings all of these films translate well to high definition which allows fans the opportunity to see them in a whole new light.

The high resolution DTS-HD MA mixes do a nice job rendering the 20 + year old soundtracks in this collection. Dialogue has discernible intonation, with distinctive clarity and above average room penetration. These are more or less front oriented presentations that make effective use of the entire system to deliver the action based components which are highlighted by solid impact, defining clarity, and the memorable music. Dynamic range is good, a bit more so in the two newer films although the limitations inherent in the original recordings are noticeable but not defining. Surround activity isn't constant but when applied can be copious as discernible spatial ambience and discrete sounds fill the listening area. The LFE channel is similarly used to punctuate sound effects like explosions, crashing cars and roaring flame throwers. The soundtracks run the gamut and contain a variety of audio cues/spatial dimension that extend the soundstage. This includes the enriching envelopment of the music as well as the discrete placement of sounds that travel from one side of the soundfield to the other. Imaging across the front is definitive while front to rear integration isn't quite as cohesive. I noted that in the two older films sounds mixed to the rear channels tends to be a bit more prominent which occasionally skews balance. The overall effect doesn't prove overtly distracting though. I found the lossless audio presentations to be quite good and a discernible improvement over their lossy counterparts. In my opinion each serves to complete an excellent overall audio/video presentation that fans are sure to appreciate.




Bonus Features:


  • Lethal Weapon:


  • Commentary by Richard Donner

  • 14 deleted/extended scenes

  • Honeymoon Suite - Lethal weapon music video

  • Theatrical trailer

  • Lethal Weapon 2:


  • Commentary by Richard Donner

  • Stunts and action featurette (1989) - 3 minutes

  • 3 deleted scenes

  • Theatrical trailer

  • Lethal Weapon 3:


  • Commentary by Richard Donner

  • 3 deleted scenes

  • Sting & Eric Clapton It's probably me music video

  • Teaser/theatrical trailers

  • Lethal Weapon 4:


  • Commentary by Richard Donner, J. Mills Goodloe, Geoff Johns

  • HBO First Look Special: Pure Lethal! New angles, new scenes and explosive outtakes - 30 minutes

  • Theatrical trailer

  • Bonus Disc (BD-25):


  • (HD) Psycho pension: The genesis of Lethal Weapon - 23 minute featurette

  • (HD) A Family Affair: Bringing Lethal Weapon to life - 29 minute featurette

  • (HD) Pulling the trigger: Expanding the world of Lethal Weapon - 29 minute featurette

  • (HD) Maximum impact: The legacy of Lethal Weapon - 22 minute featurette
attachment.php?attachmentid=247071&d=1337460912



Final Thoughts:

Lethal Weapon is a beloved and highly successful film franchise (particularly the first two installments) with a timeless appeal that has endured over the 25 years since the first release. I never tire of Murtaugh/Riggs and despite the less refreshing aspects of Lethal Weapon 3 & 4 enjoy revisiting them all from time to time. The Lethal Weapon Collection comes to Blu-ray from Warner Home Video featuring pleasing overall high definition video quality, complimentary DTS-HD Master Audio surround sound and a decent assortment of bonus supplements both old and new that is well worth checking out. Those who already own the previous high definition releases of LW 1&2 and aren't interested in LW 3&4 or the additional supplemental material can probably skip this. If you are interested in the entire collection as well as the new bonus features this five disc offering is just the ticket. Enjoy!









attachment.php?attachmentid=109949&d=1210373731






Ralph Potts
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews





Reference Review System:


JVC DLA-RS55 3D Ready 1080p High Definition Front Projector
Stewart Filmscreen - Studiotek 130 G3 100 16x9 Screen
Onkyo PR-SC5508 THX Ultra 2 Audio/Video Processor
Sherbourn Technologies - 7/200 Seven Channel Amplifier
Oppo BDP-93 Universal Disc/3D capable Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Panasonic DMP-BDT310 3D capable Blu-ray Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Toshiba HD-XA2 HD DVD Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Sony Playstation 3 Blu-ray disc Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
System Controller: Apple iPad/iRule Pro HD Universal Remote Control
Canton "Ergo" Series speakers
Axiom Audio QS8 Quadpolar speakers
SV Sound PB-13 Ultra (Rosenut finish)
APC AV S15BLK Power Conditioner/Surge Protector
Furman SPR-20i Stable Power Regulator
Wireworld, Better Cables (Silver Serpent) - Audio/Video/Speaker Cabling
Cool Components - CP-CP102 cooling package

Ralph C. Potts
Blu-ray Reviews
AVS Forum
My Home Theater
My DVD/HD DVD/Blu-ray Collection
Ralph Potts is online now  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 12 Old 05-21-2012, 07:50 AM
AVS Special Member
 
JamE55's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 1,192
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Classic good ole action flick that's a guilty pleasure of mine. You can't go wrong with any of the four movies.

Although at around $55 bucks think i'll wait for this one to hit the bargain basket.
JamE55 is offline  
post #3 of 12 Old 05-21-2012, 08:02 AM
Senior Member
 
aidoroboo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Washington DC area
Posts: 214
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 19
Are these the theatrical or the director's cuts?

Probably theatrical since "deleted/extended scenes" are part of the special feature set.
aidoroboo is offline  
post #4 of 12 Old 05-21-2012, 08:52 AM - Thread Starter
Blu-ray Reviewer
 
Ralph Potts's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Middletown NY
Posts: 8,975
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 52 Post(s)
Liked: 398
Quote:
Originally Posted by aidoroboo View Post

Are these the theatrical or the director's cuts?

Probably theatrical since "deleted/extended scenes" are part of the special feature set.

Greetings,

Theatrical only.


Regards,

Ralph C. Potts
Blu-ray Reviews
AVS Forum
My Home Theater
My DVD/HD DVD/Blu-ray Collection
Ralph Potts is online now  
post #5 of 12 Old 05-21-2012, 12:55 PM
AVS Special Member
 
mastermaybe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 7,133
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 31 Post(s)
Liked: 146
Just so there's no ambiguity: Donner has said on MANY occasions (and according to others in the know) the theatrical versions ARE the "directors cuts".

The omitted/"extra" scenes are just that: extra.

Anyone familiar with them is (well, should be, anyway) well aware why they were cut.

Not trying to pass judgment on them at all (the scenes) as I tend to love most "extra" scenes, just wanna put that it out there.

"extra" is not necessarily = director's cut.

James

Actual phone call (see pic to left):

 

Tech (responding to laughter): "I'm sorry sir, did I miss something?"

Me: "Yeah, a case of Diet Mountain Dew walking across my living room."

mastermaybe is online now  
post #6 of 12 Old 05-21-2012, 03:12 PM
Senior Member
 
starman7's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 332
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 11
Is this the same boxset as was released in the UK last year?

Thanks for the great review Ralph.
starman7 is offline  
post #7 of 12 Old 05-21-2012, 09:59 PM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Franin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Western Australia
Posts: 17,080
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 70 Post(s)
Liked: 182
Quote:
Originally Posted by starman7 View Post

Is this the same boxset as was released in the UK last year?

looks like the same.

_________________________

Frank

Franin is offline  
post #8 of 12 Old 05-22-2012, 06:19 AM
Senior Member
 
aidoroboo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Washington DC area
Posts: 214
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by mastermaybe View Post

Just so there's no ambiguity: Donner has said on MANY occasions (and according to others in the know) the theatrical versions ARE the "directors cuts".

The omitted/"extra" scenes are just that: extra.

Anyone familiar with them is (well, should be, anyway) well aware why they were cut.

Not trying to pass judgment on them at all (the scenes) as I tend to love most "extra" scenes, just wanna put that it out there.

"extra" is not necessarily = director's cut.

James

I am going by what was on the covers, "Director's Cut" w/ a silver cover first released on VHS and later on DVD.

Personally the added scenes at least in the first film add more to Riggs' background since most of the extra scenes are him in the beginning before the Christmas tree coke bust.

In #2 I think you just get to see more of Patsy Kensit and who's complaining about that?
aidoroboo is offline  
post #9 of 12 Old 05-22-2012, 09:22 AM
Advanced Member
 
coolcat4843's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 711
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 11 Post(s)
Liked: 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by starman7 View Post

Is this the same boxset as was released in the UK last year?

Yes.

I imported the Lethal Weapon Collection from Amazon UK several months ago for $25.00.
The price has since gone up to $39.50.
It's still cheaper than the expensive U.S. version.
The UK version has outstanding picture quality and rocking lossless DTS-HD Master Audio.

coolcat4843 is offline  
post #10 of 12 Old 05-22-2012, 10:05 AM
AVS Special Member
 
BrandonJF's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 1,118
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ralph Potts View Post

Those who already own the previous high definition releases of LW 1&2 and aren’t interested in LW 3&4 or the additional supplemental material can probably skip this.


Just to clarify - the transfers for LW 1&2 should be superior to the original releases if these discs are the same as the UK discs, which I'm assuming they are. So, there may be some incentive for those who own the single releases of the first two movies to upgrade depending on how tolerant they are to the original discs' issues (weren't they 1080i upconversions? I forget...).
BrandonJF is offline  
post #11 of 12 Old 05-23-2012, 06:24 AM
AVS Special Member
 
Rach's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 1,688
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 12
I didn't realize that the collection came out this week. Man, out more $$.
Rach is offline  
post #12 of 12 Old 05-31-2012, 03:28 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Chad Varnadore's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Salisbury, NC
Posts: 1,450
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by BrandonJF View Post

Just to clarify - the transfers for LW 1&2 should be superior to the original releases if these discs are the same as the UK discs, which I'm assuming they are. So, there may be some incentive for those who own the single releases of the first two movies to upgrade depending on how tolerant they are to the original discs' issues (weren't they 1080i upconversions? I forget...).

Warner "officially" stated that the "wrong filter" was used on both of the original BDs, among others like The Fugitive. At least that was their initial excuse. I've heard some other reasonable speculation though, so who knows exactly what went wrong. They did tell me at the time that the masters were 1080p.

Warner seems to filter their masters less now than they were when their primary focus was dvd and overly compressed broadcast quality. Whether they actually remastered the films for this set or just didn't completely botch them again, it should be a sizeable upgrade for the first two. I haven't seen the new set myself though, I only remember the originals and what I was told my multiple Warner reps way back when, for what that's worth.

Chad Varnadore <><
ex-armchair quarterback
***************
Our HT
Chad Varnadore is offline  
Reply Official AVS Blu-ray Disc Reviews

Tags
Lethal Weapon Collection Lethal Weapon Lethal Weapon 2 Lethal Weapon 3 Lethal Weapon 4 Blu Ray
Gear in this thread

User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off