Yes, Bruce Willis is back as John McClane in "A Good Day to Die Hard", the 5th installment of that blockbuster testosterone movie "Die Hard" the movie that
catapulted him to superstardom just as what the movie Rambo did to Sylvester Stallone or Conan to Arnold Schwarzenagger, who incidentally were the other famous action heroes from that era.
This latest installment offers just as much action and suspense as the first and the next three ones. The only other difference is that much of the action was seen on the road and therefore with more widespread destruction than when it was confined to the Japanese-owned Nakatomi building in downtown L.A.
Just like the original movie, the bad guys again happen to be from the Eastern bloc. Only this time, the setting was, surprise, surprise... in the Eastern bloc. The objects of contention are no longer just mere millions of dollars. Has opening vaults and stealing money become passe or did the terrorists have really gone more sophisticated in operation or upgraded their game? Or have they realized that the dollar is not as much worth as it was three decades ago? The object of affection this time are nukes, which are just about the only other things that are more precious than diamond these days, hidden in a forbidden, God-forsaken part of Russia.
Now what would a John McClane adventure be like without an interesting side kick? Lest this review be a spoiler, let me just say that in this movie there is yet another sidekick. But that is the twist that is revealed quite early on in the movie and necessarily so.
The only other character I missed in this sequel was a bad guy who could share the limelight as the never-say-never, derring-do New York cop who always seem to be hit with bad luck every time he hangs up his uniform. I mean this one helluva character.
Yes Alan Rickman as the Armani suit wearing leader of the terrorist gang that spoiled an office Christmas party as well as McClane's vacation. Being a good actor himself, Rickman's compelling screen presence almost stole McClane's thunder, just as much as he did as the dark cloaked sinister looking Professor Snape in the Harry Potter movie series.
There was a part in the movie where one of the bad guys said something like "It's no longer 1988 McClane!" and immediately I chuckled as I realize what he was referring to. On my way out after the movie, I even had a bigger laugh. I told hubby to look around and see that half of the audience who watched were not even born when McClane's action-laden misadventures hit the big screen and became one of the top selling movies of all time. Now if only what John went through in this movie as in his previous ones can really happen in real life. Like how he survived a car crash three times in two days. Or say jumping through the glass walls of a building, or throwing yourself inside a fiberglass chute and escape the bullets from machine guns. But then again it's these movies that I enjoy because the heroes they play don't just die or are just plain lucky so they can go on and kill the bad guys or at least outlive them.
So keep those adventures, rather misadventures coming John. And on your next 'vacation' perhaps try the Philippines. Bourne has finally found us and thought it fit for car chases, death-defying stunts and exploding cars even in the narrowest streets of this densely populated metropolis. We love action movies here big time.
And here's hoping there will be another one while Bruce can still stand up and walk straight. Lastly, let me just say this about the movie: "Yippie-kai-yey mother eff", welcome back John McClane!