HOLLYWOOD—Its hard to fathom that nearly 25 years ago one of the most exciting catch phrases of all-time “Yippe ki-yay mother ****” would turn Bruce Willis into an action superstar, but it did. Since “Die Hard” hit screens back in 1988, there have been three sequels to the franchise: “Die Hard 2: Die Harder,” “Die Hard With a Vengeance” and “Live Free or Die Hard.” You can now add another sequel to the mix “A Good Day to Die Hard,” the fifth installment in the series which follows everyone’s favorite foul-mouthed New York cop John McClane.
I will admit I have been eagerly awaiting this movie after seeing the trailer which gives the audience an idea of the chaos John McClane gets himself into after taking a trip to Russia to rescue his CIA operative son Jack (Jai Courtney) from prison. Along the way the duo stumble onto a terrorist plot involving a ruthless villain portrayed by Sergei Kolesnikov, a high ranking Russian political who uses his power to track an incriminating file.
The picture treats the audience with a few good twists and turns that they might not expect, which is a common theme in most “Die Hard” pictures. What works so well for this picture is its R-rating. The last installment was PG-13 which in my opinion took away from the hard-nose attitude most are used to seeing from Mr. McClane himself. With those boundaries not constrained a lot more foul language and uproarious one-liners grace the screen. After a tense moment, John whispers to his son “You need a hug.” “We’re not the hugging type family,” quips Jack. It’s those types of moments that make the picture a treat to watch.
The chemistry between father and son is dead on. You’ll absolutely feel that Willis and Courtney could be related in real life. Like father like son. “A Good Day to Die Hard” is a full-blown action pic. There are more stunts galore involving car chases, car explosions and helicopters that will leave tongues wagging. On top of that, the firepower this picture throws into the audience face is unlike anything I’ve seen in quite some time, not to mention the hand to hand combat fights which are pretty awesome as well.
Bruce Willis proves once again that there is only one John McClane. While age is definitely showing on the actor, it would be nice to see the series resort, but to the 1988 classic with an everyday man being placed in some unexpected situations. The later installments have appeared to stage the action for our hero instead of it being more unexpected. Some would bicker about the picture not being a great date movie, but in my opinion it’s perfect. It’s high-octane, witty dialogue and an interesting story to keep all parties engaged from start to finish. “A Good Day to Die Hard” ranks itself as one of the best sequels in the franchise next to the original.
By LaDale Anderson