Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Sue's Reviews

Ok, I am getting it out in the open. I am a closet Die Hard fan. I caught a snippet of Die Hard 3 one time with Jeremy Irons (hubba hubba) and was hooked. I watched the other films, and while they're usually trying to kill of some anti-government or anti-financial sector whacko, ultimately the films are no-brainers, let's-blow-up-as-much-crap-as-we-can-in-three-hours festivals.

I may be the only person I know with this particular passion, but when I saw this spring that a new Die Hard was coming out, I knew I had to go. I unsuccessfully tried to talk Joe and Judy into going to see it, but I knew I had an ally in my dad, so I told him that on our day together, we were going to watch Bruce Willis blow up the bad guys.

So, Tuesday we went to see Live Free or Die Hard. (If you want to know what this movie is about, keep reading. If not, skip this post. SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS--you have been warned)

The tale revolves around a former federal employee who was fired for telling the post 9/11 DHS that their computer systems were flawed and vulnerable to attack. The geniuses at DHS let him design their system and then fired him. So he spends a few years gathering up a collection of hackers who write bits and pieces of code for him which he is compiling with his crack hackin' team and he's going to take down the US of A.

The movie opens with John McClane "rescuing" his daughter Lucy from a zealous boyfriend. Lucy hates his guts. She storms up to her dorm at Rutgers and McClane returns to his car, where he gets a police bulletin that he needs to go to Camden to pick up a kid who is a hacker and haul him to DC to the FBI, which has experienced a temporary glitch in its computer systems, which has happened from being hacked.

McClane shows up at the house of Matt Farrell (played wonderfully by Justin Long--who I still adore after all these years since Ed!) just in time to rescue him from being blown up or shot by some real bad dudes who are sitting outside in a black van waiting for him to trip the bomb they've placed on his computer, activated by his delete button. Bruce saves him from one bad dude by rolling a fire extinguisher down the hall and as the bad guy comes up the stairs, Bruce shoots the extinguisher, causing it to explode and the bad guy to be blasted out the window. Thus the carnage begins.

Eventually he and the kid make it to DC, just in time for these dudes to take out the transportation system in the entire country--or at least in every major city and many minor cities nationwide. Frankly, they overdid just a bit on the DC side--two or three good traffic jams could have been created by probably 1 good accident on the beltway. Then, they take over Wall Street and the financial sector, and finally they decide to attack the utilities nationwide.

In the meantime, while the feds are figuring all this out, McClane and the kid are running around DC, trying to escape a dude with a machine gun, following them in a helicopter. Finally, they get into a tunnel and the bad guys use their remote system to send traffic into the tunnels from both ends. Caught in the cross traffic, McClane and Matt get out of the car and squat between two vehicles just as the car they were in is broadsided and flies through the air, skimming the tops of their heads and just missing them before crumpling in a heap of scraps. But that's not the end of the bracing tunnel scene--no, no, no! Bruce rigs a car, and manages to send it up a cement pylon, where it goes airborne and takes out the helicopter.

Yeah, boys, we're not skimping on a script, let's think about how we can take out a helicopter with a car!

Eventually, the bad guys kidnap McClane's daughter and Matt, and fortunately for Matt Lucy turns out to be as much of a bad ass as her old man. The head bad guy sticks her on the radio to convince her dad to give himself up, and all she says is, "Dad, there's only five of them left." This earns her a pretty nice smack to the face. When there are but 3 bad dudes left (and there was a starting number in the 30's I'd say), they take off and head for Baltimore, where McClane is chasing them in an 18 wheeler. The bad guys manage to intercept communications with an F18 fighter jet and tell the pilot to blow up the 18 wheeler.

In what has to have been the most unbelievable action sequence I have ever seen, the F18 hovers under an overpass of a major highway in Baltimore, square even with the cab of Bruce's truck, and the bastards STILL miss blowing him up!! In fact, at the last possible moment, Bruce leaps onto the wing of the plane as the pilot ejects and manages to somehow get away from the whole thing, which is spinning out of control, just before it goes down.

At this point, I and the rest of the theater with me was going bananas. GO BRUCE GO!

Of course, McClane gets his man in the end, although he has to shoot himself to do it, and the fate of the free world, which hung in the balance, is restored by the one, the only John McClane, who will probably sink into an alcoholic stupor until Die Hard 5 is released.

I'm counting the hours until a) I can see this one again and b) they announce the next one's coming out.

This was the ulimate summer movie. You didn't have to think about a damned thing. It was fun, it was a shared cinematic experience with everyone around you who were there to see exactly the same thing you are, and the bad guys are bad and die and Bruce survives about 10 explosions, 5 or 6 car wrecks, multiple beatings, and his angsty daughter.

What more can you ask?

1 pearl(s) of wisdom:

manda said...

Hey Kate... followed you over from my blog. Your favorite movies are MY favorite movies! Well, add Pride and Prejudice(the real one) to the list. Although, I just recently saw the one with Ryder, and it isn't too bad. Anywho, email me about MLS. eskieluvr at gmail.