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Die Hard: With a Vengeance

Die Hard: With a Vengeance (1995)

May. 19,1995
| Action Thriller

New York detective John McClane is back and kicking bad-guy butt in the third installment of this action-packed series, which finds him teaming with civilian Zeus Carver to prevent the loss of innocent lives. McClane thought he'd seen it all, until a genius named Simon engages McClane, his new "partner" -- and his beloved city -- in a deadly game that demands their concentration.


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Review (1~5)#Content: Script 3 | Acting 3 | Cinematography 3 | Film Editing 3#Visual: Costume Design 3 | Makeup & Hairstyling 3 | Scenic Design 3 | Lighting 3 | Visual Effects 2#Sound: Score & Soundtracks 2 | Sound Editing & Mixing 3#Overall (1~10): 6

Cameronius Explodius McMonius

Die Hard with a Vengeance was released in 1995 and was directed by John McTiernan. It is the third film in the Die Hard series and is about officer John McClane (Bruce Willis) who is called into action to stop a terrorist who is detonating areas around New York City.As someone who wasn't a big fan of Die Hard 2, this film impressed me lots and was a big improvement over the previous instalment. For me, Die Hard 2 was a rather bland action film with nothing particularly smart about it and at the same time felt too similar to the original with McClane's wife being in peril and also the fact that it too took place at Christmas, just like the first. This entry was refreshingly different and made for a great viewing experience.The film gets off to a very strong start with brilliant pacing; we're given our situations at an expert pace and we're introduced to our characters without any slow or exposition-heavy moments. Right from the get-go, the main villain begins to play his cleverly-written game of cat-and-mouse with the heroes which was very exciting and tense. Right from the start I knew this would be much better than Die Hard 2 as it proves straight away that it has wildly different ideas and provides a whole new exciting experience.Bruce Willis is once again great in the role of John McClane and the film doesn't slow itself down at any points to let us know what stage of his life he is in, and instead gives us the information over the course of the film which makes for a more effective way of giving us information rather than blatant exposition. Samuel L. Jackson was also great as Zeus, the person of whom John tags along with; the two had fantastic chemistry and I'd be more than happy to see them in a Die Hard film together again.Unfortunately, after the excellent first half, the film becomes rather bland after the point where the villain stops toying around with the heroes like he did earlier and the film becomes a rather bland action picture like Die Hard 2 was. The film did maintain the expert pace and never took a minute to breathe but was not anywhere near as thrilling as the previous half was. Also, the ending of the film felt very tacked on and much like a reshoot; because that's exactly what it was. The way the scene prior to the final scene set up the ending only worked with the original ending it was expecting, however because of the studio wanting it to be changed, the ending we received feels very out of place and overall dissatisfying.Overall, Die Hard with a Vengeance was the sequel we should have initially received instead of Die Hard 2 in my opinion and started off with many fresh ideas and constant tension as well as a brilliant pace, however most of these elements are sadly lost in the latter half and the film becomes a bland action picture towards the end. I was also dissatisfied by the new ending too and how it really didn't work at all. However, I would still recommend this film to the fans of the original Die Hard, even though the film does begin to run out of steam later on.7.8/10


I wanted to like this more. I really did. The concept is brilliant, perfect to keep the audience on the edge of their seats. As someone who knows the place, I commend the gorgeous, immersive filming of New York--even though it's from more than twenty years ago, the film looks like how the city really feels. This sets the film apart from other Hollywood depictions of New York. Most of all, Jeremy Irons' character is a worthy successor to his brother, exuding. . . let's just say he's hot and leave it at that.Sadly, the elements I liked made the sagging elements all the harder to swallow. Most conspicuously, With a Vengeance sorely lacks the scintillating dialogue of the first movie, which was a huge part of why I love it. The first third had me totally attentive, but around the middle it derails and takes too long to wrap up. And yet, the end still feels very abrupt. I would not have killed Simon with such merciless speed. Hollywood, why are your bad guys so often more lovable than your good guys? I wished the film had taken the time to explain more about Simon's background. He was in the East German Stasi or something, and felt miffed when East Germany, therefore his job, ceased to exist. That's interesting! Tell us more! And why was Hans in the West in the 80s when there were still two Germanies? With a Vengeance could have explained that, too. For that matter, who is Katya and what is her relationship with Simon like?The first Die Hard was such a delight to me because it defied my preconception that action movies were just fighting and explosions with no catharsis or character drama. This one is tipped, albeit slightly, towards the latter category.


John McTiernan has returned for a third time, and so Bruce Willis making his appearance as the beloved action hero John McClane. This time around, John McClane has become a heavy alcoholic, to the point where he is not only separated from his wife Holly but has also been suspended from the New York Police Department. After making an a rather awkward encounter with a Harlem pawn shop owner Zeus Carver (played by Samuel L. Jackson), the two witness a bomb go off in a department store nearby. The criminal mastermind behind the explosion is no one other than German terrorist Simon Gruber (played by Jeremy Irons) who gives McClane a call and pulls him a deadly game of "Simon Says", where he must perform a series of tasks around the city. Each time he fails to comply, another bomb will detonate. Assisted by the reluctant Zeus Carver, McClane must finish Simon's devious tasks one by one to save the city and stop him and his crew from robbing the Federal Reserve Building. I have watched Die Hard and Die Hard 2 plenty of times, and are they're both pretty fun action movies. The first one left a cinematic landmark on the action genre, and was a career-defining film for Bruce Willis. The second one is quite entertaining, though didn't quite make an everlasting impression like the predecessor. This one continues the franchise with more fun and edge-of-your-seat action, with Samuel L. Jackson making a surprising appearance as the supporting hero who helps John McClane on his mission to thwart Simon Gruber's twisted plan. Jackson is certainly not an actor I expected to see star opposite Bruce Willis in the franchise. Nonetheless, he does a fine job as his character, even when he gets annoying with his racial one-liners. Bruce Willis remains good as ever as the main character, showing a charismatic performance that brought to the previous two films. Willis and Jackson both work shockingly well together, and based on their performances; you can tell that these two star studs are having a blast. Jeremy Irons also brings solid appeal to his role as the main villain, though he doesn't quite bring the same charisma as what Alan Rickman delivered in the first film. I have to admit though, he does come pretty close.What is a Die Hard movie without some spectacular action sequences and a solid plot? A bad one, that's for sure. This film is filled with some exciting action scenes, complete with some tense gunfights off and on, an intense subway crash, and of course, some explosions done by the antagonist Simon Gruber. The plot on the other hand, is the biggest gem of the film. Based on the decent screenplay, the film follows a plot of the villain's plan to commit robbery, much like the previous films which also deal with robbery to acquire large sums of money, but never gets old nonetheless. The plot is full of surprises and suspense, and is solidly paced to grab viewer's attention and never let go. There is never a dull moment throughout the 131-minute runtime. Die Hard With a Vengeance is a decent continuation to John McTiernan's action franchise, and proves that Bruce Willis is still committed to his character John McClane. It is rare for a film series to age well after its third installment, but this manages to show that the third film is not always the end of the line for a great franchise.