DIRECTOR: John McTernan
May Contain Spoilers!
The third of the franchise which in 1988, set the tone for a whole genre, with Die Hard. This sees the return of John McTernan to series, after he was replaced for Die Hard II (1990) with Rene Harlin, but even though I’m not anti-Harlin, Die Hard II was still a very good action flick, on a similar level to the first. Die Hard With A Vengeance is effectively a sequel to Die Hard as Hans Gruber (Alan Rickman), the Eurotrash villain from the first film’s brother has masterminded a heist in New York and plans revenge on McClain (Bruce Willis) for murdering his sibling.
But unlike the first two in which McClain must battle terrorists who have in one way or another held his wife hostage, here he is forced into a paper chase styled game along with Samuel L. Jackson, whose career was skyrocketing after Pulp Fiction (1994) the year earlier, and they are engaging the terrorist/bank robbers across the entire city of New York and beyond.
The change in format is refreshing, with Willis and Jackson bouncing off each other as Jeremy Irons (Gruber’s Brother), hams it up and leads the pair on a merry chase. The plot is well conceived, though grossly resembling that of Goldfinger (1964) in parts, but its fast paced and exiting, as much as it’s funny, with Willis’ zinger s and Jackson constantly riding him for being racist, when he probably is not.
I would rate this as the second best of the franchise but let’s face it, the first three were all pretty much on par with each other but Die Hard 4.0 (2007) (aka – Live Free And Die Hard) was absolute tosh!
A GOOD DAY TO DIE HARD (2013) is out in U.K. Cinemas now!