|Die Hard (DVD, 1999)|
|Die Hard Bruce Willis, Alan Rickman, Bonnie Bedelia, Reginald VelJohnson, Paul|
|Die Hard by Bruce Willis, Alan Rickman, Bonnie Bedelia, Reginald VelJohnson, Pa|
|DIE HARD (DVD, Widescreen THX Edition) Bruce Willis~Bonnie Bedelia|
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It seems clear now that the 1988 film "Die Hard" is one of the most important cinematic touchstones of our lifetime, simply because every action film since then can be reduced to being a variation on the theme (e.g., "Speed" is "Die Hard" on a bus). I am not going to claim that "Die Hard" is more than mindless entertainment, but rather that it is the standard by which all mindless entertainment is to be judged.
One Christmas New York City cop John McClane (Bruce Willis) flies out to Los Angeles to enjoy a nice, quiet Christmas with his estranged wife Holly (Bonnie Bedelia), who is climbing up the corporate ladder of the Nakatomi Corporation. However John arrives at the company office party a few minutes before a group of terrorists, led by the urbane Hans Gruber (Alan Rickman), takes over and holds everybody hostage. While the bad guys begin the long process of breaking into the building' vault, McClane becomes the proverbial "fly in the ointment," on the loose in the building and causing problems. The only person on McClane's side is Sgt. Al Powell (Reginald VelJohnson), a cop on the outside who learns about what is really happening inside Nakatomi tower when McClane drops a dead body on his squad car. Also working against McClane are top cop and complete idiot Dwayne T. Robinson (Paul Gleason) and sleazy reporter Thronburg (William Atherton).
What makes "Die Hard" work? First, the film had the virtue of making Bruce Willis a movie star. Prior to this point he had failed to make his success with television's "Moonlighting" translate to movies. Leading roles in "Blind Date" and "Sunset" were disappointing enough that the best part of Willis's cinematic resume was being a courtroom spectator in "The Verdict." But in John McClane he had a character that allowed him to get off his one-liners but was also involved in some big action sequences and still found time to use his brains on several occasions. I also like the adding insult to injury twist of fate that finds McClane barefoot when things start happening. The result was that suddenly Willis was promoted to the A list, which almost always makes a bigger splash than when the star is there to begin with.
Second, there were the action sequences, the best of which remains McClane's jump off the exploding top of the building with a fire hose wrapped around his waist. Everything else pales next to that one, but the common theme you have with all of the key sequences is that McClane is an ordinary guy facing long odds in a series of extraordinary circumstances. Another common denominator is that for what McClane comes up with usually involves some thinking as well, such as using an office chair and a computer to create a detonator for plastique explosives. McClane might be unlucky, but he is not stupid. Add to this the fact that the action is pretty much non-stop once it gets started, and this is by no means a boring film.
Even the fact that "Die Hard 4: Die Hardest" is currently in pre-production can distract from the reputation of the original. Actually the two sequels are better than most of the imitators that have come down the road ("Speed" is definitely the best of that bunch). Besides making Willis a big time movie star it certainly set the bar higher for all the action films that have been made since 1988 and showed that you needed to have some heart and a sense of style to go with all the witty one-liners and explosive pyrotechnics. "Die Hard" is still a lot of fun to watch
In the first Die Hard we are introduced to the character John McClane (Bruce Willis), a tough New York cop coming to visit his wife who now lives in L. A. They are meeting at a Christmas party at the large company that she works for when it is taken over by German terrorists. (McClane is not in the room when the terrorists take the party goers hostage.) From this point on the movie becomes a mixture of action and comedic one-liners from Bruce Willis. The main villian (Alan Rickman) is frustrated by McClane's interference in his plans but he doesn't let McClane stop him as he negociates with the FBI, even as McClane kills his buddies one by one.
Willis portrays John McClane as a tough, heroic character that has a raw sense of humor. Be prepared for a fun roller coaster ride all the way to the last minute of the movie with a few gut-busting laughs along the way.
The movie is a classic action film that was the Genesis for the legendary action character John McClane and started the action career for Bruce Willis. Great film with great actors, Alan Rickman is wonderful as Hans Gruber, the main antagonist. The directing by John McTiernan is top-notch and suspenseful. The steelbook packaging of this film is awesome. The steelbook collection is one of the coolest DVD editions.
Simply put, the ultimate edition of the ultimate action flick. From what I can understand, Die Hard's original DVD release contained many of the bonus features included here. After that edition was pulled, however, subsequent editions, included the Die Hard Box Set, lack the deleted scenes and overall visual candy that was included here.
In one of the rare moves when FOX actually tries to please it's fans, the definitive edition of one of, if not the, greatest action movies of our time has been rereleased in the packaging it so rightly deserves. The 2-disc set comes in the Steelbook Edition, standing far above the thousands of other, weaker DVDs, hiding in their flimsy little plastic cases, a true testament to the fact that this movie is Metal.
You've gotta appreciate a movie that's so manly, the case itself can be used as a weapon.
Die Hard - One of the best
Quite possibly the absolute best Action Movie ever made. Bruce Willis is absolutely killer as John McClane.
The supporting cast is great, the action scenes are innovative and action packed, and the plot is superb.
John McClane is my favorite action hero of all-time and if you haven't seen Die Hard, he will be yours the second you do.
Die Hard is the best movie in the Trilogy, but it's so hard to rank the Diehard films because they are all so spectacular.
Rent or Buy?: Definitely buy this movie, but buy it with the other 2 in the box set and save yourself some money.
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