Die Hard 2: Die Harder (1990)

Renny Harlin directs Bruce Willis, Bonnie Bedelia and William Sadler in this sequel to the action disaster movie where off duty cop John McClane finds himself up against terrorists who this time had the gall to take over the airport his wife’s plane needs to land at.

I find people are very binary when talking about sequels. A sequel has to be better or it is shit. No middle ground. Die Hard 2 is a superb action flick, epic entertainment… just not quite as perfect as the original Die Hard. The issues are minor. It is unlikely (and jokingly addressed) that McClane, Holly AND Dick Thornberg would all find themselves in the same lightning strike situation twice on a Christmas Eve. The support players lack the rich joyful detailing that the ensemble of the first adventure did (though John Amos, Franco Nero and especially Denis Franz have nice character moments other actioners wouldn’t waste time affording them). McClane can free roam more and has access to more weaponry, taking away a smidge of the improvisational Boy Scout McGuyver desperation that motored the original. There are montages in the first act that lack personality and feel a bit more like disaster movie stock footage rather than determined storytelling. Quibbles. This has truly fantastic in-camera action, tremendous stunts and spectacular carnage. Willis quips and endures and goes hell to leather in a way you never see him do anymore, not even in a Die Hard cash-in. It also has the most romantic ending to a Hollywood movie ever… any Hollywood movie ever! Considering the amount of pithy motherfuckers and gleeful gore thrown about mere minutes before, that’s quite a feat to pull off. Not as diamond standard as Nakatomi Plaza? Fair comment. One of the best action sequels ever? You motherfuckers are spoilt.

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