Talk Amongst Yourselves

One of the greatest movie related comments I’ve every had the pleasure of reading on Reddit…


Brother: “Let’s watch a Christmas movie. I vote Die Hard!”

Mom: “That’s not a Christmas movie.”

Me: “Well it does take place at Christmas, mom. And it does have Christmas music in the soundtrack.”

Mom: “It’s still not a Christmas movie. Where’s the Christmas miracle?”

Brother: “You ask for miracles Mom?”

Me: “I give you the F… B… I…”

High fives all around!!

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The film has not age well. The action is subpar at best. The plot is not that great, and because many films have copy it (including the sequels), it does not feel groundbreaking. In my opinion, it is only regarded as classic due to nostalgia.


Yes, but ELLIS is one of the greatest slimeball characters ever written in an action picture….and that is something.

Matt Gamble

I’d argue that the plotting is remarkably well done, as the film weaves multiple storylines and characters around the central hub of one cop running around a building. Modern day action films try repeatedly to follow this pattern and consistently fail.

On top of that the action scenes are solid, but what stands out nowadays is that there just isn’t that much action in the movie. Its a fairly dialogue heavy film interspersed with quick action snippets. There is actually enough plot (and ridiculous level of character development) that the action plays second fiddle to the characters.

And as for the characters, while the secondary characters do their best to steal every damn scene (“Oh I hope that’s not a hostage.”) Die Hard sets itself apart from the majority of action films in that its hero isn’t a hero. he a regular blue-collar guy with tons of flaws, and not only that, is capable of being hurt. Die Hard brought about a degree of realism rarely seen in action films up until that time.

As for liking it only because of nostalgia, sorry, but its an iconic and groundbreaking film that set a new standard for the genre. Claiming people only like Die Hard because of nostalgia would be like saying the same for The Wild Bunch or Seven Samurai.

David Brook

Agreed. Die Hard is still pure class however many decades on.


“Shoot zee glass.” One of the most badass scenes in an action flick.

Rick Vance

I feel Die Hard gets a tough rap nowadays because of the mountains of shit that have tried to follow in its wake and are shit. Die Hard has probably the most clarity of vision and really thought out economy of any action film I have ever seen. Sure its got the traditional explosions and gun fire, but it is the scenes where he is at wits end pulling the glass out of his feet that people come back to again and again. It totally captures the guy in completely over his head better than almost any film and is the other side of the coin to McTiernan’s other perfect action movie Predator which is a love letter to the other common form of the genre.


Well stated, Rick. Well stated indeed. After he jumps in the vents and the terrorists start poking at them, you can see the desperation as he realizes he’s out of options and gets ready to unload his gun in a last ditch attempt to take another terrorist down.
So many deliberately great scenes like that is what sets that movie apart from movies like ‘Live Free or Die Hard’, which is the exact opposite.

Matt Hodgson

I have to put both of my feet firmly in the ‘Die Hard still rocks’ camp. The picture quality may have aged, but the film still holds up remarkably well. As others have already said, McClane is a regular guy up against a Christmas shit storm that is worse than any dinner imaginable with the in-laws, Ellis is the perfect Scumbag, and the glass in the feet scene still makes me squirm to this day.

I give Die Hard 1 and 2 a viewing nearly every Christmas. They really put my in the holiday spirit!