Live Free or Die Hard (2007)

I've never been a big fan of the Die Hard movies, and even less of a fan of Bruce Willis. They keep churning out these 80's flicks reloaded (eg: Terminator, Knight Rider, Rocky, Voltron, Rambo, Transformers, etc) to capitalize on the nostalgia of the Generation Xer's, and I generally see right through it as most have fallen quite short of the originals. However, when I read the back of the DVD, I was intrigued by the plot, and brought Live Free or Die Hard home.

Live Free or Die Hard focuses on an online terrorism scenario where the FBI Cyber Security division gets hacked, as well as multiple vital services that our country depends on: energy, transportation, water, and communication. Think this is a ridiculous plot? Unfortunately, it's not. I'm still bothered by the blackout that affected most of the Northeast US back in 2003 for a few days. What did they tell us at the time? Lightening storm when there weather radar was clear? Who really knows, and according to the conspiracy theorists, it may have been Chinese hackers. Lest we think this is limited to some kooks out there, here's something more authoritative and recent.

At any rate, getting back to the film Live Free or Die Hard, within the borders of the US the hackers have setup to take down and paralyze the US. By getting snippets of code from the best hackers, and promptly blowing up their computers with their unknowing accomplices, they've created a cold trail and isolated themselves pretty well. One of these hackers is Matt Farrell played by Justin Long. At the start of the attack, the FBI asks for some assistance from local law enforcement, and Bruce Willis, I mean John McLane a veteran NYC detective, is to pick up the hacker and deliver him to FBI Headquarters in Washington, DC. It's not exactly a shock when we end up with Long and McLane in the middle of a gun battle against the baddies unloading the clips in his sorrowfully inadequate pistol against an automatic rifle. As the film progresses, we end up with Willis and Long working some serious OT to save the US of A from heading back into some type of Amish chaos where all technology is not working.

Overall, of all the Die Hard films, Live Free or Die Hard is my favorite. Unfortunately, Willis' acting prowess is still limited and hardly of any breadth or width. If you want a decent summer style blockbuster thriller (the scene in the tunnel was quite good) with some exploding special effects, than this film can get the job done.

Overall Grade: B

Reviewed by Jonas

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