Sunday, February 11, 2018

My Ranking of the Movies in the "DIE HARD" Franchise

Below is my ranking of the five movies in the "DIE HARD" movie franchise that starred Bruce Willis as John McClane: 


1. "Die Hard" (1988) - The first movie is not always the best. But in the case of this particular movie franchise, it is for me. While visiting his estranged wife, New York City detective John McClane is trapped inside a Los Angeles skyscraper during a Christmas Eve heist led by former German terrorist Hans Gruber. Alan Rickman, Reginald VelJohnson and Bonnie Bedalia co-starred.

2. "Live Free or Die Hard" (2007) - John McClane is ordered to escort a suspected hacker targeted by cyber terrorists led by former Federal tech employee Thomas Gabriel trying to steal from the U.S. government in this surprisingly well-made film. Justin Long, Timothy Olyphant and Mary Elizabeth Winstead co-starred.

3. "Die Hard With a Vengeance" (1995) - McClane and a Harlem storekeeper named Zeus Carver are forced to play mind games by terrorist Simon Gruber (brother of Hans), while he plots the robbery of the Federal Reserve Bank in New York City. Samuel L. Jackson and Jeremy Irons co-starred in this first-rate action film, marred only by an anti-climatic ending.

4. "A Good Day to Die Hard" (2013) - McClane finds himself helping his son Jack, a C.I.A. operative, protect a Russian ex-millionaire from terrorists who want to use him to access a source of valuable weapons-grade uranium. Jai Courtney, Yuliya Snigir and Sebastian Koch co-starred in this movie with a first-rate and original narrative that is marred by a running time shorter than it should have been.

5. "Die Hard 2: Die Harder" (1990) - McClane ends up clashing with former Special Forces mercenaries at Dulles Airport on Christmas Eve, while waiting for his wife’s plane to land. William Sadler, John Amos, Dennis Franz and Bonnie Bedalia co-starred in what I believe is an entertaining film. But . . . I thought it tried too hard to copy the success of the 1988 movie.

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