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Die Hard [Blu-ray] (Bilingual)
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Die Hard is the movie franchise that made a movie star out of TV star Bruce Willis, and created an entire action-movie genre of its own. In the original 1988 film, Willis plays wisecracking New York cop John McClane, who arrives at the Nakatomi Plaza in Los Angeles to meet up with his estranged wife, Holly (Bonny Bedelia), at her office Christmas party. As luck would have it, the company ends up in the middle of a terrorist plot led by Hans Gruber (Alan Rickman) and his gang of expert killers, and with little help coming from outside, McClane has to pick off his enemies one by one. Thus was born the "Die Hard genre," epitomized by such films as Under Siege ("Die Hard on a ship"), Passenger 57 ("Die Hard on a plane"), Speed ("Die Hard on a bus"), and Cliffhanger ("Die Hard on a mountain"). But few measure up to the explosive brilliance of Die Hard. Director John McTiernan develops the action at a fast and furious pace, culminating in some fantastic set-pieces on the top of the building, in the elevator shaft, and in the building's outer plaza. Jeb Stuart and Steven E. de Souza's script, based on Roderick Thorp's novel Nothing Lasts Forever, is smart, funny, and full of memorable lines (among them "Welcome to the party, pal!" and of course "Yippee ki-ay, motherf*****"), and the cast is perfection, especially Rickman as the cunningly evil villain, and Willis, whose McClane character--bloodied, beaten, bruised, and barely breathing, as he battles both bad guys and bureaucrats--is someone audiences could genuinely cheer for. --David Horiuchi --This text refers to the DVD edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
Action, Thriller, 131 minutes
Directed by John McTiernan
Starring Bruce Willis, Alan Rickman and Reginald VelJohnson
Nominated for four technical Oscars, Die Hard is one of the movies from this list which fun to watch without having any real substance or profound message. It's a guilty pleasure.
The plot is predictable and simple. A gang of terrorists, led by Hans Gruber (Rickman) decides to take hostages in a high-rise building while attempting to steal bonds from the vault. John McClane (Willis) is on vacation to visit his estranged wife and she's one of the hostages. McClane makes a base on the upper floors and tries to pick off the gang one at a time. His only contact is a radio link with a police officer (VelJohnson).
This movie is pure action with a little suspense. Do you think McClane will succeed? Like I said, it's predictable. But Willis plays this role well. Complete with one-liners and a recurring catchphrase, the four-movie franchise is extremely corny. Somehow it doesn't matter because it's fun. Sometimes I like to watch something where I don't have to ponder the plot and guess what will happen next. If you just want some mindless entertainment with good acting and decent execution, Die Hard fits the bill.
Cast: Bruce Willis, Alan Rickman, Bonnie Bedalia, Alexander Gudonov, Paul Gleason, William Atherton, Hart Bochner, James Shigeta, Reginald Vel Johnson.
Running Time: 132 minutes.
Rated R for extreme violence, language, and brief nudity.
Fresh of his success with the popular television series "Moonlighting", Bruce Willis takes his stab at the motion picture business with full force. "Die Hard" works on many levels--mainly as an action flick with a powerful leading star that adds a touch of normalcy and humor--but it also discusses more important views such as the criticism of the culturization of Japanese technology that was taking place at the time as well as the horrific, ongoing threat of terrorism. It s a film that shows just how vulnerable any business or workplace really is to a terrible force but also how one man can stand up to the challenge and ultimately make a difference.
John McClane (Willis) is a New York City cop who travels to the Los Angeles area to reconcile with his seperated wife (Bonnie Bedalia) and family, who left him to pursue a lucrative job with a Japanese financial industry skyscraper. While participating in a Christmas Eve party, the building is overtaken by German terrorists who want to use the hostage Japanese executives to break into the company safe. McClane watches as the head terrorist (played brilliantly by Alan Rickman) blows the brains out of the Japenese CEO realizes that the game is on.
With the help of a gun-shy cop (Reginald Vel Johnson--yes, that's right--Mr. Winslow from "Family Matters") and to the annoyance of police chief Paul Gleason, McClane runs around like a chicken with its head cut off attempting to save the hostages.Read more ›
Off-duty cop (Bruce Willis) saves hostages and dispatches the sadistic bad guys against overwhelming odds - a simple plot, done many times since this 1988 thriller, but never done as effectively. The difference: This movie was well-written, well-acted, and well-directed. The script balances heart-pounding action with funny one-liners that always make me laugh out loud. Bruce Willis is wonderful as the Rambo-esque superguy who outwits, outplays, and outlasts the heavily-armed killers, and reveals just enough of his tender side to endear his character to the audience.
Willis is backed up by outstanding supporting players who add depth and surprises: Reginald Veljohnson is the sympathetic cop Willis talks to via radio during his ordeal. Veljohnson is superb as the buddy who grounds the movie. Paul Gleason, whose forte is playing self-important fools, injects much humor into his role as Deputy Police Chief. Alan Rickman plays the witty, urbane gang leader with devilish flair. He is assisted by the talented Alexander Godunov as a ruthless killer. De'voreaux White shines in a small but important role as a helpful limo driver. There is even a funny bit with two FBI agents, both named Johnson (no relation).
The production values are top quality, the action never stops, and each stunt is unique and utterly stupendous. I heartily recommend Die Hard to those who love action films and those who just love excellence in film.
Die Hard is just that kind of movie, and it's done in such a way that puts the many action movies being put out following it to shame.
If you're a fan of the modern action flicks, then Die Hard sounds like old hat. A group of international terrorists, with one goal in mind and a bunch of hostages that will be their ticket to that goal. Only one man can stop them.
The joy of this movie is that it seems every person who speaks in this movie is just as important as the main one, John McClane (Bruce Willis). Most characters have their own little quirks, and even the cronie terrorists seem to have a personality, something that you'll likely never see in action movies these days.
McClane is a New York City cop entering the confusing atmosphere of Los Angeles, traveling to see his wife who had traveled out here to capitalize on a big promotion. Accompanied to the large building by Argyle (De'voreaux White in an unappreciated role, no doubt), McClane makes his entrance to the Christmas party. After finding that his wife has returned to her maiden name of Gennero, McClane meets with Mrs. McClane (Bonnie Bedelia), but the reunion is short-lived and rather unsatisfactory. As John kicks himself mentally, the terrorists make their entrance, led by a character later to be revealed as Hans Gruber (Alan Rickman). From there, the movie lifts your spirits up, crushes them down, and then repeats. When it's all said and done, you'll have wrapped up quite the satisfying movie experience.
Looking back on this movie 16 years after its initial release, it's easy to pass this off as a stereotypical movie.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
It's great and fun action film, one of the very best from the 1980's. The sequels it spawned are all decent but this first film is by far the best and the one worth owning. Read morePublished 29 days ago by From the Musician's Pen
I was very pleased with this movie. It arrived when I was told it would be genre and we enjoyed watching it . It is nice to be able to get these older movies and enjoy them .Published 17 months ago by Lorraine. Mattinson
All you need for a good action movie is 1: Bruce Willis, 2: Terrorists trying to blow things up and 3: that's basically it.... :DPublished on Sept. 6 2013 by S. Franey