It's drugs again, this time in southern California with cop partners Mel Gibson and Danny Glover chasing sleazy dope dealers in a nonstop crime actioner. Roger Murtaugh (Glover), who is about to turn 50, exercises the kind of life-preserving caution that Martin Riggs (Gibson) has

discarded. Riggs's wife has been killed in an accident, and he doesn't care whether he lives or dies, just so long as he can take all the bad guys with him. Murtaugh has a hard time surviving with such a self-destructive partner as they investigate "The General" (Mitchell Ryan), head of an

extensive drug smuggling operation. The acceleration of this film, which has a brisk pace at the start, is dizzying at the finale and is accomplished mostly through fantastic editing. It's an effective if not obvious ploy to blind the viewer to the fact that there is not much plot or character

development in the predictable script. Gibson is truly frightening as the cop about to go into orbit, and Glover is a standout as the down-to-earth lawman with very much to lose. Director Richard Donner, whose previous efforts include the first SUPERMAN and LADYHAWKE, had another hit with LETHAL

WEAPON, which grossed more than $60 million at the box office within three months after its release. At last count, the number of sequels was up to three.