Can the same thing happen to the same man twice, two years in a row, on the same day? When your name is John McClean, the answer is: Yes, it certainly can.
(Besties… they just don’t know it yet)
Today we’re looking at Die Hard II, which is actually my favourite of the Die Hard films, followed by IV, III and then I…. I prefer to think that V never happened (much as I like Jai Courtney, it was shit). I know there are many Bruce Willis fans grimacing at me right now, but look, this is my blog and it’s Christmas, so, just, no.
In Die Hard II, we find John at the airport on Christmas Eve, waiting to pick up his wife, Holly. Presumably things are going much better for them since the events of Die Hard, as John has moved out from NY to LA so he can be with her, although they’re in Washington so they can spend Christmas with her family (who feed the kids too much sugar, just so you know). Unsurprisingly, it is chaos at the airport and it doesn’t tale too long until John makes enemies with the airport security over double parking. Luckily John is a likeable guy, so you know, eventually they make up and become besties. It’s pretty luck too, because strange things are afoot at Dulles International.
(Die Hard II: this time, it’s winter… that’ll slow you down, John)
Of course, Christmas Eve just happens to be the same day that the US government has chosen to move a very high profile war criminal and thus is also the same day that his sympathisers have decided to attempt a kind of jailbreak/ flight to freedom (they call it the silly season for a good reason, guys). Of course, John McClean being John McClean, isn’t going to let that happen on his watch and so, once he gets wise to what is about to unfold, he makes it his personal mission to fuck shit up for all the bad guys, at every turn. Sometimes he is successful and sometimes he isn’t… despite John’s best efforts, it wouldn’t be a Die Hard film unless people died (hard).
(THIS GUY IS PRETTY SERIOUS. Look at his face… plus he is working out in the buff when we first meet him, so you know he is giving absolutely no fucks… )
I’m going to say that this instalment has more action and more death than number one (remember the whole jet full of people that meet their fiery end on the tarmac at the whim of the deranged general? Right there you get double the body count of the first film) I liked John more in this instalment as well. I can’t put my finger on what it is, maybe it’s that he is more relaxed because he is back in the role of husband and father and isn’t trying to fight bad guys and save his marriage. I love the end scene where he is covered in blood and his clothing is all burnt and exploded and he’s screaming out ‘Holly!! Holly!!’ (I’m such a romantic, I know).
Overall, there are so many things I love about this movie – for instance, you can smoke in the airport! Plus, a fax machine is the most technological piece of equipment on the market. Lol, it was the best of times. I also love John’s roll-neck sweater (before it gets exploded off) and the dude in the basement with all the maps and records. Oh and let’s not forget the cameo by John’s friend from the first movie and Dennis Franz (pre-NYPD Blue), playing the grumpiest beat cop ever! Robert Patrick also pops up in this movie (just prior to his appearance as the T1000), playing random bad guy #46 and the horrible Richard Thornburg is back, now with an AVO out against Holly. Of course that doesn’t stop Holly assaulting him with a stun gun… she’s my hero.
Favourite scene: All of them – but I do love the final scene where John is on the plane… I don’t want to give it away
Favourite quote: ‘I used it on my little dog…’
Life lesson: Never answer the door to strange workmen when you’re home alone on Christmas Eve – they’re probably there to kill you and take over your church.
I’ll leave you with this one, my darlings… I hope you enjoy it as much as I do! Let us pray that our Christmas is half as exciting…