Image copyright © by Marcus Trahan

Die Hard 2: Die Harder


It always becomes a question of how many unbelievable things can you ignore and still have fun. The usual supertanker-load of high caliber bullets are expended, 99.99999% of them hitting nothing important, 100% of them missing John McClane, even though about 50% of them are expended in his general direction. Well, that’s standard, if you can’t shrug that off you shouldn’t bother with films like this, ever. Then a plane that was “running on fumes” crash-lands in a fireball roughly the size of the mushroom cloud over Nagasaki. Jeez, where did all those flames come from? Don’t ask, action-movie guys like big fireballs, even if they don’t make sense. That everyone except McClane and one ally will have his head jammed firmly up his ass is a given, you just have to skip over that. And whatever you do, don’t count the number of bad guys required to pull off this take-over of an airport, including guys stationed in highly unlikely places and a truly huge number of turncoats in the ranks of the “good guys.” I lost count, but I estimate it at around 50,000. Bottom line, I have to be in the right mood for a picture like this, and last night I was. I cringed, but I still had some fun. Another night, if my brain happened to be engaged, I might have written a very different review.

One question, though: A small church is mined with a dozen C4 bombs on timers … and they never go off. Given the enthusiasm for explosions in movies like this, I can’t understand it. It wasn’t needed, it wasn’t necessary, but it was set up, and not delivered. Did something go wrong and it was too expensive to rebuild the church and re-shoot?

And an observation: I continue to believe that Bruce Willis’s signature “terminator moment” in all 4 of these films, i.e., when the hero delivers an “Hasta la vista, baby!” punch line, in this case “Yippee-ki-yay, motherfucker!” is pretty lame. Not even in contention with “You’re terminated, fucker!”