I seem to be overdosing on visits to the cinema at the moment…
It feels weird writing this but the best phrase I can think of to describe Die Hard 4.0 is old fashioned, not that that’s a bad thing (of which I will return to later). I didn’t really have that high a hopes for it based on the directors previous output, the absolutely terrible Underworld films – the only films ever to make me feel old because they were just too bloody loud.
Anyway, before this becomes anther diatribe of why Sony owes me two hours of my life I’ll return to the subject in hand. I didn’t have that high a hopes because Wiseman (the director) appeared to be one of the worst purveyors of digital stuntmen, those handy pixellated people who remove any sense of danger from a film. Fortunately he seems to have realised that with this series what the audience wants to see is Bruce Willis getting seven shades of crap beaten out of him but still killing the cartoon bad guys, usually with a flippant quip. As such we see a return to the sort of gloriously crazy stuntwork most recently only seen in the Bourne films and Casino Royale, only once do you sit there thinking “This was done in front of a green screen”.
The script is of course utter tosh and anyone with even a basic understanding of computers is advised to turn off these parts of their brain before sitting down to munch popcorn or heap abuse at the screen. However, the one liners are still there (albeit trimmed of the fabulous obscenities that made the first film such a joy) and the villains are passable – no one will ever be able to top Alan Rickman’s gloriously over-the-top performance in the first.
So is it any good? Well, yes. It’s no where near the quality of the first (what is?), but it is certainly on a par with the other sequels and better than a lot of the anemic action films we’ve got recently. Of course, Bourne next week is likely to make this look like a day out with pensioners.