Tuesday, April 21, 2009

A Frank Review of "Live Free or Die Hard 4.0" (2007)

The Short Version? John McClane vs. cyber-terrorists
What Is It? Action.
Who Is In It? Bruce Willis.
Should I See It? Yeah.

This will be a short piece, because there isn't much to say. If you like big dumb action movies, this is among the least embarrassing options available. It has an appropriate lead, solid action set-ups, and comic relief that doesn't grate too much. It resembles the other movies in that it has a roughneck hero in an out-sized situation, a Eurocentric hands-off main villain, a long-haired chief chop-sockey lackey, and banter.

The movie varies from its predecessors in that, despite protestations during production, there's an excessive amount of obvious CGI. I don't recall any black people in the movie, though there's healthy racial diversity in minor roles. John McClane's everyman quality is strained by his going from a balding disadvantaged cop to the √úbermensch with a glistening clean cranium. McClane doesn't feel much at all like the guy from the other movies in personality, but his shoehorned daughter/damsel-in-distress sometimes seems to channel him, so there's that. Everything's ridiculous and incredible, with no relation to anything resembling reality.

So hey, big booms, slight ha-has... Set aside the title "Die Hard," which hasn't exactly been a banner of quality since 1988 anyway, and enjoy this brainless fluff as best as you can.

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