Watched the not really expected fourth part of the venerable Die Hard saga. The naming of the movie is questionable, while the print showed the “Die Hard 4.0″-name on screen, all the US media seem to be using the old name still. Like the recently sighted Ocean’s Thirteen this movie turned oout to be a really good summer movie – lots of flash, but not utterly devoid of cerebral matter either (unlike the latest Spiderman and Pirates installments).
The movie takes a while to get going – the first ten minutes aren’t really quality entertainment, but once the director gets comfortable, the viewers are in on a rollicking ride. A ride that remains credible for the most part of the show, barring a few stretches straight out of True Lies, this could pretty much have been an extended episode of 24.
Bruce Willis plays the aging John McClane to a hilt – spewing one-liners with precision, whilst getting shot, hit, skewered by flying glass and all around walking wounded. Justin Long, as the hacker sidekick is far less annooying than expected, and the hacker culture altogether is rather drawn without major snapping of disbelief (albeit drawn with a really big brush). Kevin Smith’s über-geek Warlock is saddled with too many cliches for comfort, but like Willis and Timothy Olyphant (yeah, the Deadwood guy) he fits his part like a glove.
Lots of screentime is given to product placement – Nokia phones and communicators are frequently seen, and Gears of War makes it on screen twice.
Those wondering where the hacker guy is familiar: he’s the Mac in Apple’s television ads. And those wondering what’s the song playing when McClane enters Farrell’s apartment: no clue (Flyleaf sounds about right when looking at the choices on the soundtrack).
As a conclusion: easily the best in the series since the original adventure at Nakatomi Plaza, and a very good summer movie on its own. Wouldn’t bet on part 5 ever appearing, but if the quality remains on this level – further episodes certainly wouldn’t hurt.