¨The things we do for our kids! Yippee Ki-Yay…¨
This is the fifth film in the Die Hard franchise which began way back in 1988 when Bruce Willis still had some hair. That movie helped Willis become an action star and raised the bar for all action movies since. It also received four Oscar nominations. None of the sequels have been able to match that same quality, but at least they had a decent storyline and were overall pretty decent films. A Good Day to Die Hard on the other hand not only does it not live up to the franchise expectations, it kills it once and for all thanks to a terrible script and some senseless action scenes. This film is all noise, but no content. It is the shortest and by far the worse film of the franchise making the 2007 sequel look like a masterpiece next to this one. A lot of things went wrong with this film; first of all it was directed by John Moore (Max Payne, The Omen) who in my opinion hasn’t directed a good movie in his entire career. Second, the script written by Skip Woods is absolutely terrible with no story whatsoever or any character development. Woods didn’t repeat the success he had with the A-Team film which I found to be pretty funny and entertaining. Third and perhaps the most fatal mistake they took John McClane out of the United States and took him to Russia which is too bad because in the original film New York was more like a character than a simple location. I am just so glad that Nicolas Winding Refn decided not to direct this terrible story. He´s a smart man. So far the 2013 releases have been pretty weak and A Good Day to Die Hard wasn’t the exception.
For the first time we get to follow our hero, John McClane (Bruce Willis) to a foreign territory as he decides to travel to Russia on vacations in search of his troubled son, Jack (Jai Courtney) with whom he hasn’t been in contact with in over three years. Jack happens to be on trial for murder, but what his father doesn’t know is that he is working as an undercover agent for the CIA. Jack is on a mission to prevent a nuclear weapon heist and he is actually on trial to try to free Yuri Komarov (Sebastian Koch), a political prisoner who claims to have important incriminating evidence in a secret hidden file on a high ranked Russian official named Viktor Chagarin (Sergei Kolesnikov). Jack is trying to free Yuri before the corrupt officials get to Yuri and eliminate him in order to get his hands on the file and prevent a nuclear war. This is when John arrives in Russia and while he is getting to the courthouse to find his son he gets caught in the middle of a gigantic explosion that is being led by Chagarin and his men to try to intercept Yuri before he testifies. Jack manages to rescue Yuri and they escape from the courthouse, but are being followed. John catches up with them while they are being pursued and his son Jack is not too pleased to see him. His father seems to have interfered with his plan to rescue Yuri and the rest of the CIA officials have to cancel the extraction. Now they are forced to work together in order to get Yuri to safety and find the file before Chagarin and his men do.
Like in all other Die Hard films we have plenty of helicopter explosions and a lot of action, but we lack a true story. There is very little dialog in this film and hardly any transition time from one action scene to another. That is why this film is so short, there is no room for character development and the producers don’t want us to think too much about the plot. Everything feels so rushed and in my opinion John Moore has completely killed this franchise through this uninspired script that they decided to work with. The film is very disappointing, loud, and full of boring vehicle chases and explosions. Not even Bruce Willis has enough charisma this time to save the film. Unlike in his earlier films where his character, John McClane was a mere mortal who bled and got beat up, here they make him look like a superhero who can´t be touched. There is no fun in his character being an immortal, because what we liked about him in the first place was his vulnerability and the courage he had to face danger despite getting hurt. His character lacks personality just like this film does which has been reduced to a bunch of noise and senseless twists. Skip this movie.