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Thursday, November 10, 2005

The Casual Critic — The Die Hard Trilogy

Killing a Saturday afternoon watching Die Hard 2 makes me wonder why we watch the Die Hard movies again and again . . . and again.

Ok, the first few times we can say we're looking for the intricacies we undoubtedly missed on our first viewing. Just how did John McClain finally get to fingerprint the first terrorist he knocked-off when he was barred from any official business? These are critical details you simply can't retain after just one viewing.

Then there are the times when it just sort of ended up on, and, after you got comfortable, you realized the clicker was out of reach. You don't really want to watch, but there's nothing specific that you do want to watch so you leave it on. These are the days that you watch it on regular T.V. despite the horrendous voice-overs that cover up the frequent F-bombs. It's bad enough Bruce Willis isn't actually doing McClain's voice-overs, but we all know that "Yippee-kayee, Mr. Falcon" just doesn't cut it.

Watching it between Thanksgiving and New Year's allows for the classic-holiday-movie excuse. Don't we all watch It's a Wonderful Life every year? We used to watch it three or four times before NBC bought exclusive rights and took that holiday joy away, but that's another column. This argument also holds up for the original Die Hard, as both take place just before Christmas. In fact, at least Die Hard 2 ends with "Let it Snow" as the credits roll. (If I wasn't the Casual Critic, I'd feel obligated to find out what serenades us at the end of the original.)

But, let's face it, we watch the Die Hard trilogy because they're guy movies. They're the ultimate cops and robbers. Some guy, a regular guy who happens to be a cop, goes from an ordinary day to single-handedly thwarting an elaborate terrorist/criminal plot. He throws bad guys through windows, climbs around in secret compartments of buildings, and blows up a plane-full of terrorists with his lighter.

What's not to love?

If you're in the mood for a guy movie, any of the Die Hard is worth watching . . . again.

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