Die Hard 4.0
Okay, so it was never going to be as good as the original, but action fans can breathe easy as Die Hard 4.0 is a damn sight better than Die Hard 2 and just edges in front of Die Hard With A Vengeance, waving a defiant fist at franchise naysayers with every explosion. This time around, McClane has to deal with an internet-based organisation, overseen by tech wiz Thomas Gabriel (Olyphant), and their plan to destroy the technical and economic infrastructure of the United States. Along for the ride is wacky computer geek Matt (Long), and the two unlikely pals race across New York in an attempt to track down the bad guys. For action fans, there's a whole host of action sequences to salivate over, but the standouts have to be the van in the elevator shaft and the truck vs. fighter jet chase (even though it smacks of a True Lies rip off). At two hours plus, director Len Wiseman (Underworld) does a good job in keeping the movie flowing and the stop-start nature of the action surprisingly adds to the momentum of the movie rather than detracting from it. The self-referential gags, although, are annoying rather than amusing - there's an FBI agent called Johnson, Long asking McClane "Have you done this kind of thing before? Etc." - but they're gladly kept to a minimum. With no Samuel L. Jackson to bounce insults off, it's up to Justin Long to make an name for himself and although he's afforded most of the one-liners, Long doesn't have a lot to do but run, duck a few bullets and hammer away at a keyboard. The same goes for Willis except swap 'keyboard' for 'bad guys'. Olyphant doesn't have the presence of Alan Rickman and is essentially the same nemesis that William Sadler and Jeremy Irons were - standing around in the background shouting orders through a perpetual frown. Die Hard 4.0 might be a bit obvious and over-zealous at times, but as action movies go, it's hard to beat.
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