The fourth Die Hard film, released as Live Free or Die Hard in the United States and simply Die Hard 4.0 elsewhere, came out in 2007, twelve years after the release of Die Hard with a Vengeance. There had been gaps in the series before (there was a five year gap between the second and third films), but nothing quite like that. So there was some question as to whether it would be a good entry in the franchise… especially as the 2000s and onward have been full of very-belated sequels that don’t live up to the originals.
Len Wiseman, director of the first two Underworld films, takes the helm here. Bruce Willis returns, of course, as John McClane, and of course John’s life outside of fighting crime and terrorism hasn’t gotten any easier. His daughter Lucy (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) is estranged from him, refusing to even use the same last name, but has a lot of the same belligerent attitude John himself has. But he soon has little time to worry about that, as FBI deputy director Bowman (Cliff Curtis) calls in a favor to NYPD to bring in a hacker that the FBI is interested in after a cyber attack. McClane arrives just as assassins try to kill the hacker, and we’re off to the usual assortment of shootouts and explosions. Hey, we all know why we’re here. Trying McClane’s patience is the hacker himself; Matt Farrell (Justin Long) is hyperactive, needy, and prone to rant on anti-corporate conspiracy theories, and quickly gets on McClane’s nerves. Continue reading