Die Hard 2 (1990)

(Third viewing, On DVD, April 2017) I’m sure that I last saw Die Hard 2 roughly ten years ago, but since I can’t find trace of it in my online reviews, let’s have another go at it: A decent follow-up to the first movie, Die Hard 2 leaves the skyscraper for a snow-covered airport and reliably goes for big action sequences no matter their crazy justification. Bruce Willis stars as John MacClaine, a bit more super-powered than in the original but still recognizable as a reluctant everyman hero stuck in a bad situation. It still works pretty well, despite some rough special effects and occasional lulls: Director Renny Harlin was climbing at the top of his game back then, and the tension of the film is effectively handled. What I didn’t remember from previous viewing is how heavily saturated by eighties politics the script remains—the references to Irangate are barely camouflaged, and the film does carry a perceptible whiff of Reagan-era political concerns. But of course, the point are the action sequences, and Die Hard 2 does measure up decently as an action film. While not the enduring classic of its prequel, Die Hard 2 remains a good action movie … and it still lives up to expectations today.

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