NOT RECOMMENDED: “I’m on vacation!” Does the thought of Bruce Willis saying that while getting his action-hero on in Russia make you chuckle? It better, because he drops that line about a half-dozen times over A Good Day To Die Hard‘s 97-minute runtime. But Bruce Willis doesn’t say that, you say, John McClane does. We know Bruce is playing a character, but that character certainly isn’t John McClane, so we don’t know what to call him.
Anyone who saw the most recent Die Hard film, Live Free or Die Hard, will notice similar complaints here. John McClane was once just an off-duty cop that was in the right place at the right time (or wrong place at the wrong time, really), but now, over 20 years later, McClane has turned from law-enforcing everyman to strangely curmudeonly superhero who laughs when he finds out his son is in Russia doing “spy shit.” What kind of spy shit? Shhh, we’re moving on.
AGDTDH is big-budget action movie released in 2013, so you expect the standard trappings of action for action’s sake, unnecessary explosions, ignored laws of physics, some of the worst dialog we’re ever seen, and plot holes the size of that meteorite that hit Russia today (looks like those poor people had the wrong Bruce Willis movie come out this week). Just as Speed 2: Cruise Control was originally written to be a Die Hard film, AGDTDH feels like it could have been any other run-of-the-mill Bourne knockoff that they added John McClane to in a hurried rewrite.
We’ve seen tons of movies that didn’t live up to their trailers, but this may be the first movie where the quality of the film fell short of its wonderful tagline.
ALSO NEW IN THEATERS: Safe Haven, which is based on a Nicholas Sparks book — so there’s that — but Richard Roeper’s review, in which he is excited, confused, and befuddled by what he claims may be one of the most ludicrous plot twists ever, has us kinda intrigued; and Beautiful Creatures, which is like Twilight with witches even though people keep saying it’s totally not Twilight with witches.