HOLLYWOOD─There are so many people that talk time and time again about what qualifies as a Christmas movie, and what I consider to be, is such a flick that is not likely to be on everyone else’s list. No I’m not referring to “A Christmas Story” or “It’s a Wonderful Life.” “Home Alone” ranks pretty high, but it is the 1988 action flick “Die Hard” that sings holidays for me in more ways than you can imagine. Now wait a second and listen to my argument about what qualifies “Die Hard” as a Christmas adventure before saying else wise.
For starters, its setting takes place on Christmas Eve that is a very important element America. If this flick was set during any other time frame, I wouldn’t call it Christmas. Now beyond the setting, it has a thrilling narrative with a phenomenal protagonist in John McClane (Bruce Willis). Willis is like the everyday guy, but a New York cop with an edge. He is brassy; he speaks his mind, and is not afraid to call it as he sees it.
The dialogue that comes out this guy’s mouth would only fit for Willis who assumes his character with such ease, it is scary. On the flip side, we have an unforgettable villain in Hans Gruber (Alan Rickman). Rickman is fantastic in this villainous role where he has a bit of an edge, but oozes villainy in a great way. The banter between John and Hans is constant throughout the movie, so when they finally reach that epic climax it is worth the wait.
Some of you might be asking what makes “Die Hard” the perfect holiday movie. Well I can literally watch it every single time it comes on TV without hesitation. Heck I’ve probably watched the movie at least 4-5 times the week of Christmas alone. The jokes never get old, the action never gets old, and the story never gets old. There are so many movies that tot themselves as an action-flick, but they have no idea. This movie has it all, gunfire, explosions galore, epic fights, shootouts and thrilling moments that are iconic.
How about the introduction of Reginald VelJohnson’s character to the party courtesy of John dropping the body of one of the terrorists on his vehicle? Its iconic and just one of the many memorable moments in the flick. We also have that classic line “Yippie Kay Yah M***********!” It is just dialogue that only this movie could deliver. It also helps that he movie takes place during a Christmas party as icing on the cake America.
We have the strained relationship between John and his wife, Holly (Bonnie Bedelia), and the fact that he is the only person as the opposition to a group of terrorists seeking millions inside a hidden vault in the Nakatomi building, is exhilarating. The plot is simple, but the way the movie plays out is so fluid, so rich, it never gets boring. You know you have a good movie when each time you watch it; it feels like you’re watching it for the first time people.
My family has been known to gather around the TV every Christmas Eve to watch this classic; it’s a tradition, so much to the point that after the big festive dinner, we watch the movie again. If that does not scream a Christmas classic, I really don’t know what to tell you. Yes, it might sound odd, but everyone has their Christmas favs, for me it has and will always be “Die Hard!”