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“A Good Day to Die Hard”
Rated R for violence and language
Runtime: 97 minutes
Release date: Feb. 14
Rating: Who cares, it’s Die Hard
Critics across the country have been ripping apart “A Good Day to Die Hard.” It might not be the best movie this year but, let’s face it, quality filmmaking is not what draws audiences to this type of movie.
People go to a “Die Hard” movie to see things blow up, bad guys beaten and Bruce Willis bruised and battered in a T-shirt by the end.
So with that in mind, the fifth entry in the “Die Hard” series does what it sets out to do. It provides action sequences that are realistically impossible, lots of explosions and one-liners.
Instead of talking about what No. 5 is not, let’s look at how the original “Die Hard” changed the landscape of action movies.
“Die Hard” leapt, almost literally, onto movie screens in 1988. Before then, action films were dominated by tough guys or muscle-bound action stars. “Die Hard” changed that.
John McClane was an ordinary New York City cop who found himself in the middle of a bad situa-tion, often muttering, “I’m on vacation.”
He was the only one with enough sense and toughness to take out the bad guys and save the day. It started a trend of action movies featuring ordinary men. Soon, other films followed the pattern. Think about it. “Speed” is one example. It was just “Die Hard” on a bus.
The action film was changed and so was the action star. Today, you say the name Bruce Willis and automatically think of a Hollywood tough guy, a super action star. At the time “Die Hard” was released Willis was more known for his wisecracking private investigator in television’s “Moonlighting.”
Audiences probably were scratching their heads to think of him in an action movie. Whoever made that casting decision was a genius. They not only changed action films forever, they probably changed Willis’ career in a way he never would have imagined.
Today, anyone can be an action star. The ordinary can be extraordinary.
Now, “Die Hard” stands as the ultimate action flick. In fact, most men consider it a must in their film libraries.
Barney Stinson, a character on TV’s “How I Met Your Mother,” even includes it in his famous “Bro Code.”
It states, “A bro shall stop whatever he’s doing and watch ‘Die Hard’ if it’s on TV.”
Whatever your thoughts on the subsequent films in the “Die Hard’ series, the original was a ground-breaking film in the action genre.
As for the newest film, it’s entertaining and serves its purpose. It’s not spectacular and is highly predictable but it’s a fun night out at the movies. Yes, there’s no way John McClane should still be alive if he really did all the crazy things in this film. But that’s kind of the point, isn’t it?
In a “Die Hard” film you soak in the impossible action and wait for Willis to say his famous line. Then you’re pretty much happy.
Have fun, and in the words of John McClane, “Yipee Ki-Yay, moviegoers.” You really didn’t think I was going to say something else, did you?
Becca Owsley can be
reached at (270) 505-1741 or bowsley@thenewsenterprise.
com. For movie reviews
visit her reporter page
on Facebook at www.facebook.com/pages/Becca-Owsley/96924584861.