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  Publicity Stills of "Die Hard 4.0"
(Courtesy from 20th Century Fox)

Genre: Crime/Action
Director: Len Wiseman
Cast: Bruce Willis, Justin Long, Maggie Q, Timothy Olyphant, Cliff Curtis, Kevin Smith, Mary Elizabeth Winstead
RunTime: 2 hrs 10 mins
Released By: 20th Century Fox
Rating: PG
Official Website: www.livefreeordiehard.com

Opening Day: 5 July 2007


John McClane is back for Independence Day 2007. Bruce Willis reprises his signature role as the New York City cop who always finds himself in the wrong place at the wrong time, in a new installment of Twentieth Century Fox’s Die Hard action franchise: LIVE FREE OR DIE HARD. The Die Hard films are renowned for their non-stop action and tongue-in-cheek humor, and LIVE FREE OR DIE HARD will offer the biggest, most realistic set pieces in the franchise’s illustrious history, as well as an arsenal of McClane’s unique brand of humor. In the new picture, an attack on the vulnerable United States computer infrastructure begins to shut down the entire nation. The mysterious figure behind the shattering scheme has figured out every digital angle – but he never figured on an old-fashioned, “analog” fly-in-the-ointment: John McClane.

Movie Review:

Summer blockbusters has never run out of action pieces armed with explosions, car chases and knuckle fights. But all lacks the main jizz of a true action flick. Gone were the days of blood grining punches without the CGI implaced. It has been twelve years since Mclane ran about New York answering riddles and he’s back working his usual beat as a New York detective sent to pick up a known hacker who may be involve breaching the FBI mainframe. He gets there just in time to save Farrell (Justin Long) from a bomb that was set up in his computer. Seven hackers are already dead—and Farrell was supposed to be the eighth. As McClane tries to transport Farrell to Washington, D.C., a team of digital terrorists led by Thomas Gabriel (Timothy Olyphant) begins systematically shutting down the entire country. They start with transportation. Then they take down the country’s financial systems. Then they start attacking the utilities. Now, the nation’s security is at stake, and McClane needs to keep Farrell alive—because he’s the country’s only hope. Sounds easy to follow doesn't it? It should because it's main ingredient isn't about the plot. As with all Die Hard franchise, it all about the action.

At age 52, Bruce Willis isn’t getting any younger and with all that physical extremity —you might worry—if he's going to break a hip or something. Fret not, this time the hard-boiled cop has gotten older, a little crankier and certainly even more protective of his estranged family, especially daughter Lucy (Mary Elizabeth Winstead), but none of that has made him someone you’d want to pick a fight with.

Die Hard 4.0 fits together in much the same way Die Hard 3 did. Instead of being locked in a building or an airport the way he was in 1 and 2, McClane is sent roving across the countryside with a sidekick. In 3 that sidekick was Samuel L. Jackson. In this one it’s Justin Long as Matt Farrell, a computer hacker in over his head. The country’s computer infrastructure is under attack by high-tech terrorists, and McClane and Farrell end up being our last line of defense through a series of completely bogus, silly plot coincidences which you won’t care about since you’ll be too busy watching McClane fall down an elevator shaft in a car. Don't ask.

Thankfully in this era of sequels, this fourth entry in the series proves to be a blissfully entertaining adrenaline rush that we haven't seen in ages Its low tech thrills and spills is far more exhilarating than those found in most CGI heavy contenders this year. Don’t get me wrong. This is nothing more than 130-minute comic book, director Len Wiseman (Underworld and Underworld: Evolution) has been keeping his foot on squarely on the gas pedal and the common sense totally to a minimum. And for those having trouble suspending their disbelief entering the theater to watch this is probably a bad idea.

Too bad for them because, for the rest of us, this fourth Die Hard is to die for. Sure, a lot of it feels stitched together from other movies like True Lies, Enemy of the State, The Italian Job, but that doesn’t make the film any less entertaining. This has got to be one of the most frantically exhilarating films I’ve likely to see (well this and a certain thingamajig that's more than meets..you get the idea...).

On the performance side of things, Willis slides back into the role of McClane with ease. The veteran actor may be in his 50’s, but he still knows how to throw a punch (as well as take one) like a seasoned pro. He’s also remained a top-flight wiseass in his old age, and though McClane might not exactly understand all the techno babble that’s classified him as an analog cop in a digital world, he still manages to get under the skin of his adversaries like the good old days. Timothy Olyphant isn’t nearly as memorable as past villains like Alan Rickman and Jeremy Irons, and Justin Long is no Samuel L Jackson by any means, but they’re both great additions to the cast. Kevin Smith’s eleventh-hour cameo leaves much to be desired, but this is only nitpicking an otherwise enjoyable experience.

The bottom line here is that Die Hard 4.0 will fit pretty comfortably on a shelf with the rest of the Die Hard movies. For a movie 130mins alittle too long, the knowledge of our working class superhero McClane saving the day is more than enough for me to live free in the knowledge that this cinematic everyman still has one more ecstatically exhilarating adventure left in him. With an ending only John Mclane is crazy enough to do so. Yippee-ki-yay indeed. And boy, it was worth the ride!

Movie Rating: -

(Old school action makes a comeback that surpasses expectation!)

Review by Lokman BS

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