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die hard

DIE HARD (1988)

When an Los Angeles office building is taken hostage by terrorists, NYPD John McClane must find a way to beat the terrorists at their game and rescue the hostages, which include his wife.  Joining the action is the FBI, but of course, the wily McClane, whose investment is more than personal in the case, has other plans for the terrorists.

The cast includes Bruce Willis, Alan Rickman, Bonnie Bedelia, and Alexander Godunov.

Director John McTiernan's DIE HARD, is a riveting, high octane action burst.

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Promotional Lines: "40 Stories Of Sheer Adventure!"
"Twelve terrorists. One cop. The odds are against John McClane... That's just the way he likes it."

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"Die Hard" is an exciting action thriller about a New York cop who encounters a band of Euro-terrorists. As his wife and her fellow employees are held captive, the cop wages a one man war against the bad guys.

It is Christmas Eve, and New York detective, John McClane has just flown into LAX, and is picked up by a limo, sent by his estranged wife's company, the Nakatomi Corp.. He proceeds to the company's office party in a tall L.A. building, hopefully, to get a chance to try to mend the differences that separate his wife, Holly Genero McClane and himself, in hopes of getting his family back together. While waiting in her office with his shoes off, a motley group of Euro-terrorists, led by the evil Hans Gruber, (Alan Rickman), ruthlessly burst into this company party, killing two people within an hour of arriving. John is the only one to escape capture, becoming the "fly in the ointment, the monkey in the wrench," who finds creative ways to irk, annoy and knock off bad guys, as well as managing to finally bring in the authorities, to liven up the party, and the heat on the bad terrorists, who are really after the valuable barabonds locked in the company's safe.

As Holly watches the terrorists talk angrily together in German, after discovering the dead body of their cohort in the elevator, she comments: "Only John can get someone that mad."

The film benefits from the tight structure, being lean, mean with no wasted moments filmed. It focuses on the fast-paced action in and around an L.A. skyscraper. This exceptional action-filled screenplay was by Jeb Stuart and Steven E. de Souza, based on the novel by Roderick Thorp.

Veteran action film director, John McTiernan, who has brought us such movies as "The Hunt for Red October," "Predator," and "Die Hard 3," keeps the pacing and action pumping, and the actors true to form, bringing the excitement and tension of the film to such a height as to keep the audience riveted, to see what is going to happen next.

Bruce Willis, as John McClane does a marvelous job bringing this feisty, clever, anti-authority cop to life.This is the movie that made Bruce Willis a big movie star. His macho resourceful guy, is a kind of cross between John Wayne and Humphrey Bogart, and is a delight to watch, as he takes out the bad guys, one by one, outfoxes Hans Gruber and his men and endures whatever they throw at him.

Bonnie Bedelia, is convincing as Holly Genero McClane, who remains strong and unflappable for her employees, and for her husband's survival, not giving anything away, letting him get an edge or two, before a dunderbrain she works with spills the beans about who she and John are in reality.

Alan Rickman makes a fine villain, with no mercy or redeeming values, the perfect character that earns what is coming to him, delivered by the manly John McClane, as he saves his wife.

Courtney B. Vance does a good job as Theo. I loved his psychopathic portrayal of Theo, the smart- Alec computer whiz kid who helps this gang hack through the defenses of the company computer, in order to get to the bonds.

My favorite scene involves a chance encounter between cop Willis and head terrorist Rickman. With a great American accent, Rickman pretends to be a scared hostage who has eluded the terrorists. The cat and mouse game between Willis and Rickman, as we the audience try to figure out if Willis sees through Rickman's rouse, if fun, big star entertainment.

Overall the effects and stunts are first rate and the pacing is fast and exciting.

If you liked DIE HARD you may enjoy DIE HARD 2, THE FUGITIVE, THE FIFTH ELEMENT, ARMAGEDDON, UNDER SIEGE, and DIE HARD WITH A VENGEANCE.