“[an air traffic controller has suggested getting portable lights to direct the planes] And where do we get those big portable lights? Borrow them from Batman?” Chief Engineer Leslie Barnes
Number of Times Seen – Way too many times to count (3 times in Theater, cable, Video, 13 Oct 1992, DVD, 13 May 2000, Mar 2012 and 24 Nov 2013)
Brief Synopsis – Off-duty cop John McClane once again must save the day when terrorists take over Dulles airport with his wife aboard one of the circling planes above.
My Take on it – I was extremely psyched when news of this sequel came out. I loved the original Die Hard (1988) and couldn’t wait for this movie to come out on 4 July 1990. I promised a close friend of mine that we would go see it at noon for the first showing that day.
Unexpectedly, they had a preview showing the night before and since this particular friend couldn’t go see it with me, I went with another friend to the preview screening. I still went to see it again the following day at noon. This was the one and only time that I saw the same movie twice within an 18 hour window in the theater. I can’t recall which viewing was better, but they both were obviously entertaining for me.
6 months prior to the movie coming out, the friend who I saw the movie with at noon, mentioned to me that he saw in the newspaper that they were looking for extras to show up in Upstate Michigan (I grew up near Detroit, so it was a few hours drive each way) for all-night filming of some scenes for Die Hard 2. We both wanted to go, but in the end chose not to.
BIG Regret!!!!! The scenes filmed upstate were of the planes landing and a few other wintery scenes. I can only imagine now how amazing it would have been to have gone and to see either one of us (or both of us) in the finished film. Oh well! 😦
I had the pleasure to see it a third time in the theater a few weeks later with yet another friend.
This movie IMHO is only slightly weaker than the original and over the years, I have enjoyed watching them both back-to-back numerous times (including this week) since they are true companion pieces.
It is great to see McClane once again in action and Willis’ one-liners here are some of the most memorable from the whole series.
Great supporting roles by Dennis Franz, Franco Nero, William Sadler, John Amos, Fred Thompson and Art Evans with returning supporting players Bonnie Bedelia, Reginald VelJohnson and William Atherton also performing well.
Spoiler alert!! I have always found it interesting that one of the major plot points in this movie was revealed to me just by the fact that I had seen another movie (and also read the book) that used the same idea. That movie was The Park is Mine (1986) with Tommy Lee Jones as a frustrated Vietnam vet who takes control of Central Park and uses different ammunition (Blanks and real ammo) with different colored tape to differentiate between them. Knowing this info helped me realize what was going on before it is truly revealed in the movie.
Bottom Line – Excellent sequel that keeps the momentum and tone of the original. Highly recommended!
Rating – Oscar Worthy
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