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4.7 out of 5 stars146
4.7 out of 5 stars
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 31 October 2003
This is the most bullet-ridden, blood stained, fire breathing movie of all time, it has all of the above mixed in with great one liners and superb characters. No questions it is THE best action movie of all time, and to prove it i need say only this...... i put a mark on the back of my long-owned precious die hard vhs case every time i watch it....currently at 143 no joke!...i love this movie with a passion it brings together every element needed for a classic, and this IS a classic
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 1 August 2013
I'm a big fan of the Die Hard films i already have all the films on DVD
when i found out about this all new Doco called Decoding Die Hard i knew i had to get it
but first i found out it was only available with the new 5 Disc blu-ray Legacy collection
and i didn't want to pay tons of money on this boxset just for the Bonus Disc
cause there is another Die Hard film in the works already to be released next year in cinemas
it's suppose to be the final Die Hard for the franchise,
Bruce willis is rumoured to be retiring from the Character after the final film
which i don't blame him, he's getting old that's for sure
so of course 20th century fox will re-release another Die Hard blu-ray boxset for next year's film

so i did some internet searching and found out that the original Die Hard has been released as
a 2 Disc special edition with the Decoding Die hard Doco

so i just bought this 2 Disc edition just to watch the Die Hard Doco and i have no regrets
if i should have bought the 5 Disc legacy collection or not.
this all new Documentary definitely is new, all interviews are recently recorded last year i guess.

All the interviews are featurette's, so you can watch them seperatly all play all the featurette's
like a big Documentary which runs over 90min
this Doco is fantastic, all new interviews and new retrospectives with all
the Directors, Producers, writers, exect producers, only some of the actors/actress's from the series
are interviewed aswell, but sadly and very unfortunate no interviews with Bruce willis for some reason
one of the featurettes is about the Villans of Die Hard which has never been presented
interviews with Alan rickman, William sadler, Jeremy irons
also rare footage from the films some stuff that has been seen already and some footage that hasn't
Definitely better Documentary than the last one that was released back in 2007-2008
for the release of the 4th Die Hard

the blu-ray version of Die Hard i watched 2nd, watched most of it cause i have it on dvd anyway
the picture and audio quality is excellent, the quality has definitely been enhanced by blu-ray tech
but the 2007 DVD reissue i have is still excellent picture and audio anyway
but each to their own, it's matter of opinion.

so yes there are 2 options either buy the 5 Disc blu-ray collection that has the Bonus Documentary anyway
up to you what you want to spend you money on.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 8 October 2007
Bruce Willis plays John McClane, a swaggering New York cop who arrives in LA to patch things up with his wife, Holly (Bonnie Bedelia, who would be sorely missed in the second sequel). Unfortunately, Hans Gruber (Alan Rickman) has also come to town. He takes Holly and her work colleagues hostage on the 30th floor in a bid to bide time while his goons break into the vault to steal 600 million dollars in bearer bonds. McClane, meanwhile, is loose amongst the building's lift shafts and air vents, picking off Gruber's men with a pistol and a one-liner.

Let's leave aside the Nakatomi Plaza's phallic presence (complete with climactic rooftop explosion) and concentrate on the people in it. John McClane: he's the sort of action hero who can chain smoke filterless European cigarettes before sprinting up four flights of stairs, having a fist fight and then leaping off a 40-storey building with a fire hose wrapped round his waist. Gruber, paradoxically, and yet strangely likewise, is precisely who we would want to be if we were a ruthless global criminal: suave, literate, deadly; an "exceptional thief".

Events build up and up until we have a proper cat-and-mouse story. The odds are stacked against McClane: he's outnumbered, out-gunned, and out-shoed. But he's also a resilient fellow - a stubborn working man stuck in his ways - and he doesn't care much for foreign types trespassing on the ranch. For all the incredulity of many of our hero's actions, he is an everyman; forget juggernauts versus jet fighters - this incarnation of McClane huffs and puffs and bleeds. It HURTS jumping off a building, and he's modern enough to show it.

Along the way we meet some neatly written side characters, most of whom belong to the bumbling good guys. Deputy Police Chief Dwayne T. Robinson (Paul Gleason) is scoping for promotion; journalist Richard Thornburg (the hilarious William Atherton, effectively reprising his role from Ghost Busters) sniffs a Pulitzer; and FBI agents Johnson and Johnson (Robert Davi and Grand L. Bush) just want to chew gum and get the job done with acceptable hostage losses.

McTiernan is a peerless action director when he's on form (see also Predator and Die Hard With a Vengeance), and this is his pinnacle, harking from the days when stunts meant stunts, not green-screen. Thumbs-up to cinematographer Jan de Bont, too, for proving that his best work is done on another director's leash. And Michael Kamen's score - foreboding and triumphant in equal measures - is so good it barely changed a note for three movies.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 3 September 2015
A point of reference for action films and still one of the best ever made.
Ironic, inventive, adrenalinic, surprising, and with onscreen visual effect, so no CGI or easy solutions: all that you see, hear and enjoy is the result of a director and a bunch of excellent professionals that know how to produce and shoot a film.
Die Hard is, in fact, a film that is still engaging but is, in a sense, a kind of classic film made in the classic way.
And you can tell also by the way it is written: a fresh, exciting and well balanced script where twists are essential and action is where you need it and not spread all over the story, in order to lead the viewer through ups and downs, and never get bored. A film that smartly plays with all the cliché of the hero and the bad guys, the helpers, the victims in a very refreshing way. Many memorable lines and moments, a great construction of action scenes where, surprisingly enough, you can follow the action and do not get lost in thousands shots and ultrafast edit that would have produced only confusion with no engagement. Excellent blu ray
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on 8 February 2002
Between this and Predator, director John McTiernan has established himself as one of the best (THE best in my opinion) action directors of his time. So, as you can imagine, a director's commentary is most welcome. The film alone is worth buying this DVD for but the commentaries are excellent and entertaining. The features on the second disk are a bit dissapointing though and won't hold your attention for long. Buy this and keep the second disk, it will make a fine coaster whilst you enjoy the film with some drinks.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon 18 December 2010
Die Hard is not 'your typical action film'. No way. And anyone who would view it as such really ought to stick with Twilight and Narnia.

In the Sixties, author Roderick Thorp wrote a novel, The Detective, which was turned into a movie, starring Frank Sinatra in the title role of Joe Leland. A sequel, Nothing Lasts Forever, was written, in which Joe becomes trapped in the Claxxon Oil Corporation skyscraper after it is taken over by German terrorists and he has to rescue his daughter and grandchildren. Two decades later, the skyscraper becomes Nakatomi, the daughter becomes the wife, Leland becomes John McClane and the title becomes Die Hard.

To say that Die Hard sets new standards for action movies is like calling Bill Gates modestly wealthy. The movie was so innovative and groundbreaking that dozens of rip-offs followed - Passenger 57, Under Siege, Cliffhanger, Sudden Death, et al. Hostage/terrorist movies were all the rage in the early Nineties.

Very few came close, because Die Hard had so many strong points, not least of which was Alan Rickman's cold performance, as Hans Gruber - also the name of the villain in Our Man Flint - the classically educated, smartly dressed terrorist leader. This is not some hammy guy in a chain-mail shirt with a Freddy Mercury mustache. Gruber would have been well at home on Wall Street.

His plan is to break into the vault on the 30th floor of the Nakatomi Plaza and take away $640million in negotiable bearer bonds. When he and his 12 European henchmen round up the office workers, who are enjoying a Christmas Eve party, one man slips away unnoticed. He is John McClane, a New York cop who has come to LA to settle down with his estranged wife, Holly (Bonnie Bedelia). The odds are against him. But that's just the way he likes it.

The terrorists even have names. And we remember them. Most action movies these days have unidentified heavies, played by stunt men, who are lined up and knocked over.

In his battle to save his Holly, McClane is scorched, torched, beaten and blown up. He jumps off the roof and falls through air ducts. He uncovers deception and double-cross and picks broken glass out of his bare feet. No help comes from the naive and incompetent police, who are unable to get inside, and even less from the FBI.

McClane is not a supercop. He is an ordinary guy, who doesn't want a fight. When he is shot, he bleeds. He hurts. All he has are his pants, his vest, his gun - which runs out of ammo. This is the first realistic connection the audience has. When you don't want to be in McClane's position, it makes for much excitement.

John McTiernan, who's only previous mainstream movie was Predator, uses awesome photography and technical skills to give the film a truly polished and sophisticated look - it was nominated for four technical Academy Awards. He also allows for enough time for decent character development, most of which comes between McClane and a cop (Reginald Veljohnson) he makes friends with on a CB radio.

Die Hard manages to be heart-pounding and teeth-gritting every single time. It's lost some of it's respect in recent years as action films, post-1999, have tried endlessly to imitate The Matrix and use digital effects in place of real stunts (I'm pointing a big finger at Die Hard 4.0 [Blu-ray] [2007], which doesn't exist to me), which is a really big loss and signaled the beginning of the end of the true, tough guy action film.

If you are one of those many people who have only ever been able to watch it on TV then now is definitely the time to rediscover a cool, classic and creative action picture on Blu Ray. It looks brilliant in 2.35:1 1080p, and it retains most of the features from the DVD.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 17 August 2006
We all know what to expect from action thrillers, unbelievable gun scenes, unrealistic events like jumping off buildings, bad guy and good guy stereotypes: thankfully this Oscar nominated 1988 smash keeps all these conventions down to a minimum and delivers an exciting twisting plot.

Bruce Willis starts as the sarcastic, cool laid back cop John McClane who has managed to escape the eyes of the terrorists and runs around creating mayhem. The idea of this is great and creates high tension for the audiences who will associate well with the central protagonist. He's a cool guy and Willis conforms to the ideas that are required and performs greatly, creating jokes and also conforming to the emotional ideas set which add up to a very `real' character who older audiences will be able to associate with.

The story is flowing and appreciative of the crime, action genre. We have the typical conventions in gun fights, terrorists etc and all are used magnificently. The start isn't the best and takes a while to get going to appreciate what the film is really about but when the terrorists enter the frame the story moves up a notch and I found myself diving deep into a world of politics as Rickman plays Gruber really well, adding his evilness to the stereotypical terrorist as he starts running the show.

Having the film in one location, The Nakatomi Tower, all the time works wonders as the stars are all trapped and have to work with what they have, making their options limited.

There are question marks over a few action scenes, not always a high sense of verisimilitude but thankfully the majority of the film is believable but always fast and flowing with great characters that are always conforming to different ideas and opinions.

The use of family issues adds an ideology of how serious life is. As well as classic sarcasm running through the central protagonist there are you're typical terrorist and cop jokes which were expected but funny nonetheless.

A huge question mark hovers over the ending but apart from the beginning and ending it is one of the more memorable action thrillers of recent years, worth seeing
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 21 November 2000
Die Hard represents the class of modern action pictures and the standard by which they must be judged. Few films falling into the "mindless entertainment" genre have as much going for them as this movie. Not only is it a thrill-a-minute ride, but it has one of the best film villains in recent memory, a hero everyone can relate to, dialogue that crackles with wit, and a lot of very impressive pyrotechnics.
John McClane (Bruce Willis) had intended to spend a nice, quiet Christmas with his wife Holly (Bonnie Bedelia) and children, ironing out his marital problems and trying to resolve the situation that has him working in New York City as a cop while her career keeps her in Los Angeles. Unfortunately for John, a group of terrorists, led by the suave Hans Gruber (Alan Rickman), has other ideas. After taking over the high rise Nakatomi Tower and holding the attendees of the Christmas party (including Holly) hostage, they begin the time-consuming and complex procedure of breaking into the building's vault. However, one thing - perhaps the only thing - that Hans didn't plan on was John McClane, the self-professed "fly in the ointment," who is on the loose inside, and whose goals are in direct contradiction with those of the terrorists.
With Die Hard, director John McTiernan (a.k.a Predator) has given us a modern action classic - a movie that doesn't slow down until the end credits are rolling to the tune of "Let It Snow." McTiernan is a master of pacing, and on those few occasions when the script lets him down, the camerawork of Jan De Bont comes to the rescue. This film is explosive in more ways than one - a lavish, noisy extravaganza that gets the adrenaline flowing.
Bruce Willis is perfect as the wisecracking John McClane, an "everyday" sort of guy who gets caught up in circumstances that force him to play the reluctant hero. This is a person that we can root for, even when some of the things he's doing are humanly impossible. Willis' acting skills are limited (although he did fine work playing a Vietnam Vet in In Country), but it's hard to imagine anyone else in this role.
Alan Rickman's Hans Gruber redefines the action genre villain. The man's charm lies in that volatile mixture of violence and cunning, all sheathed in a gentlemanly civility. Hans is intelligent, and Rickman plays the part with not only a sense of the man he's portraying, but an obvious respect for him as well. It doesn't take many minutes of screen time for us to be aware that Hans is no ordinary terrorist.
The supporting cast gives solid performances, even though there aren't talent-stretching roles to be filled. Bonnie Bedelia (as the wife in danger) and Reginald Veljohnson (as McClane's cop-on-the-outside-contact) are noteworthy. William Atherton is suitably slimy in a small role as a tabloid journalist.
Whether Bruce Willis is climbing up an elevator shaft, throwing himself off an exploding building, or racing barefoot across a flood littered with glass shards, his John McClane holds our attention while we hold our breaths. Die Hard isn't motion picture poetry, but it shows the kind of raucous entertainment that the industry is capable of delivering. For what it is, this is the top model - flash, bang, and witty one-liners included. Perfect!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Bruce Willis' plays 'New-York' cop 'John McClane' who finds himself trapped in a '30 odd storey' building along with '30 hostages'
they are held by a gang of heavily armed gang led brilliantly by 'Alan Rickman' playing 'Hans Gruber' who are attempting a hi-tech robbery of 'Bonds'
This is the first in the series of 'Die-Hard' movies(arguably the best) which is jam-packed with some great action, it also has a refreshing element of humour.
i was a little dubious on how well the first one would transfer on to 'Blu-ray' i needn't of worried, both picture and sound were pretty good........a must buy on this format for action-film fans. (Hard to believe this was made as long ago as 1988)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 3 May 2004
For all action fans this movie is a must see. It really has everything that you could want from a good film. Bruce Willis is brilliant as John McClane who finds himself in the wrong place at the wrong time when terrorists take over the office tower that he is in attending a christmas party with his wife Holly. As a viewer you wont have to wait long for the action. In no time at all, McClane is crawling through ventilation shafts, dangling off ledges and taking on hoards of rampant terrorists with his trusty pistol. A particulary excellent scence is when McClane shoots a guy through the bottom of a table. The one liner that follows is pure dynamite, and could have come off the shelf of any a James Bond film. There is a perfect mix of heavy action and witty humour in the film that lets it flow incredibly smoothly and stops it suffering from overkill at any stage. Another masterstroke by the film-makers was casting Alan Rickman. He is absolutely perfect for this role and has a voice of velvet that will make you smile. He is so ruthless, efficient and downright good at being a terrorist that it is sometimes a little difficult to belive that he doesn't succeed in his plans. However McClane is so very good and the action so entertaining and relentless that this never becomes a grating issue. It is extreamley easy and enjoyable to watch. Lovers of action will adore this because it is pure cheesy action cliches to the core. And thats what makes it brilliant.
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