Brian’s Review – “A Good Day To Die Hard” (2013)

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What’s it About?

John McClane travels to Russia to help out his seemingly wayward son, Jack, only to discover that Jack is a CIA operative working undercover

A Good Day to Die Hard

Directed by John Moore

2 out of 10

By Brian

John McClane, played by Bruce Willis (Pulp Fiction, Red 2), travels to Russia to help out his seemingly wayward son, Jack, only to discover that Jack, played by Jai Courtney (I, Frankenstein), is a CIA operative working to prevent a nuclear-weapons heist, causing the father and son to team up against underworld forces. Bruce Willis ought to be ashamed of himself for having the audacity of inflicting this piece of shit on the public and then having the nerve to call it a Die Hard film.

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This is as bad a cash grab I’ve seen from an actor in recent memory. All of the charm and fun from the earlier entries in the series feels like a distant memory and they’re replaced with an experience here that feels cold, boring, distant, incomprehensible, and ugly. Why in the hell did Bruce Willis even make this? He’s certainly not hard up for cash after being one of the top paid actors for the last quarter century. The mind boggles.

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So, why do a sequel to a beloved series that isn’t of very high quality? I’m not here to try to convince anyone that Die Hard is high art or anything but they were slam bam action films that were pure fun and contained a realistic hero in un-relenting and un-realistic situations. The John McClane character is among the most beloved off all time in the action genre and easily Bruce Willis’s most iconic screen role to date.

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This film shows a complete disrespect for the earlier work and Willis himself is largely to blame. My criticism are as follows:

  1. There’s no discernable story here. If there’s no story then the audience has zero reason to care.
  2. As with #1, there’s no characters that are remotely interesting…including John McClane!!! If you don’t care about the characters, you don’t care when they’re in danger and therefore there’s no suspense.
  3. This film is photographed horribly. The entire thing is way too dark and smothered in dark blues and smeary reds. It creates problems as a viewer because when you mix that with the shaky cam effect, it makes an already impossible film to follow even murkier.
  4. Bruce Willis acts old and tired. He puts no effort in to create any dramatic weight and looks utterly bored.
  5. John Moore is a schlock director. Did anyone see Max Payne? I rest my case.
  6. You won’t have any clue what’s going on from one scene to the next. There’s no flow. I was confused and yet too bored to put in any effort to figure it out.
  7. The villain sucks. He has no back-story and very few lines.
  8. There’s double crosses by characters who have almost no screen time. If I don’t even know who these people are, why would I care if someone betrayed someone else?

I could go on and on but I’ll end with this. This isn’t just the worst Die Hard film but my pick as the worst film of 2013.

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20 comments

  1. It pretty much wasn’t a Die Hard movie. Just another action movie, that just so happened to feature Bruce Willis. That was it. Good review Brian.

    • My chances of ever finishing this movie are diminishing ever more greatly with every comment. Thanks for checking in, Dan! Glad you liked Brian’s review.

    • Haha! He looks so bored in this movie, too. He appears as if just thinking what he will do with the easy paycheck.

      Thanks for stopping by and checking out Brian’s review. I appreciate it!

  2. I usually don’t agree with Brian’s rants, but I don’t know how anyone could argue for this garbage. 2 is a little harsh, I might go 5, but that’s stretching it. Bruce Willis’ acting said, “Give me my money and let me leave” the whole film. He could not give a crap less about this movie which is part of the reason why this film was so disappointing. As for worst film of 2013, let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Has Brian seen Thor: The Dark World?

    • Not sure of he has seen Thor TDW but if he has and hated it then I can’t wait to see how much he rants on about that one! Maybe I can convince him to write one up?

      As far as this film, I only made it in about 20 minutes and bailed. I even started a review but felt extremely uninspired to even finish it, so the honors went to Bri.

      Thanks for checking in and the feedback. Always appreciated. Take care!

      • If Brian can give it a watch and a rant, I would love that. I did my own rant if you haven’t read my review on that. Just a terrible, terrible film. Bruce Willis’ last few films have been very disappointing. G.I. Joe Retailation wasn’t any good either.

      • I think I have only seen Thor TDW once and I recall not completely hating it but it’s not a movie I would seek out again any time soon. Thought it was just average but I will head over and check out your review, now!

        Saw Retaliation only once as well. I thought it had it’s moments but don’t recall much of it to tell you the truth. Willis is kind of just doing any movie these days without really considering the stories I guess. I thought Red 2 and Looper were decent. But I totally get what you’re saying, though.

    • LOL πŸ™‚ I’m sure Brian would not disagree with you there, Ruth. I should see if he has seen T4, too! πŸ™‚

      Thanks for stopping by!

  3. Aside from all the faults, it was Willis that annoyed me the most. This movie using even close to a Die a hard film and he’s certainly not playing John McClane.

  4. Bad movie , but to be fair to BW it’s probably pretty difficult to turn down the type of money he was paid for this no matter how you feel about the Die Hard legacy. Besides, Live Free or Die Hard was nearly as bad so this isn’t new territory for him. If anything I blame those of us who keep flocking to he theater to see this crap. If they didn’t make money studios wouldn’t keep churning them out. All that said, it is a soulless actioner in which BW is just going through the motions and his co-star sucks. He’s a cheap Sam Worthington knock off. And Wothington himself is terrible so do the math.

    For whatever it’s worth, I liked Thor: the Dark World, but that’s another conversation for another day.

  5. Also, they probably sign the contract to do the film 2 years before they start shooting and Hollywood loves to change the script right up to the shooting dates. Bruce could have signed on for a good script, then been pissed that so much had changed before filming…just a thought:)

  6. So folks are saying this is as bad as Transformers 4 eh? That, along with the negative review mean that I will likely never be viewing this. The trailer looked like absolute crap!

  7. I know I’m known for my negative rants but I liked Thor: The Dark World. It was entertaining and well acted. Loki stole the show, as usual. As far as Transformers goes, I’ve only seen the first 2 and consider them both a couple of the worst pieces of shit I’ve ever had the displeasure of exposing my eyeballs to. If you really want to hear a rant, I’ll write a review for Anchorman 2.

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