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17.3.10

WRITTEN REVIEW: Die Hard

By FOREST TAYLOR
THE PLOT
A group of terrorists seize control of a Los Angeles office building, and only a lone New York City cop can stop them.

WHY GUYS LIKE IT:
This is pretty much the quintessential guy movie. One macho dude manages to out-wit and out-gun twelve highly trained terrorists and reconcile with his estranged wife in the process. It’s a win-win situation: kill the bad guys and save your marriage. More than that though, is the fact that Bruce Willis’s John McClane is more of an everyman’s hero. Unlike the Schwarzenegger’s and the Stallone’s of the era, McClane manages to save the day while still being very human. He gets beat up (and I mean really, really beat up) and he has doubts about whether or not he’ll make it out alive. As a result, he’s much more believable than the invincible action heroes that dominated the 1980s. Finally, Alan Rickman’s Hans Gruber is a villain that you just love to hate. The whole time you’re watching you just can’t wait for McClane to give that smug European a good old American beatdown.

WHY GIRLS MIGHT LIKE IT:
This is a tough one to explain because there really is so much macho going on that it might leave the ladies in the dust. However, and bare with me on this, on the surface Die Hard really is a love story at heart. Think about it; this is a movie about a man who gets punched, shot, bludgeoned, and literally walks on broken glass all to save the woman he loves. If that’s not a romance, I don’t know what is. Also, although she does spend most of the movie as a hostage, Bonnie Bedelia gets to do more than your typical damsel in distress. She stands up to Hans on several occasions and she even gets a few good one-liners of her own. In the vastly inferior sequel she is relegated to no more than a woman in peril and in the later movies she isn’t there at all, but in this one film she holds her own in what is pretty much a boy’s club.

DIE HARD

★ ★ ★ ★ ½

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