LOS ANGELES, CA - Are you a die hard Christmas movie fan? Let’s rephrase that: Do you believe the 1988 action film Die Hard is a Christmas movie? Absolutely!
First and foremost, it takes place on Christmas Eve. In fact, that’s the reason our hero, John McClane (Bruce Willis), arrives in Los Angeles in the first place -- to see his estranged wife and his kids.
Shortly after landing in L.A., McClane is picked up in a limousine, and Run DMC’s “Christmas in Hollis” is played. It’s not your typical Christmas music, but it’s a hint this is not your average Christmas movie.
Next, McClane attends an office Christmas party at Nakatomi Plaza where we meet his wife Holly. Get it? Holly?
Unfortunately the party is interrupted by a gun-wielding Grinch named Hans Gruber (Alan Rickman) who is after $640 million in negotiable Bearer Bonds instead of the toys of Whoville.
Shortly after we meet our villain, we get our first glimpse of Santa Claus. Ok, it’s a dead terrorist with a Santa hat, but it’s close enough. And the iconic scene adds some Christmas cheer when Gruber utters the iconic line, “Now I have a machine gun, ho-ho-ho…”
Speaking of Hans Gruber, did you know that the man who composed “Silent Night” was named Franz Gruber? Hans doesn’t sing “Silent Night”, but he does hum “Ode to Joy” during his heist.
Unlike Dr. Seuss’ Grinch, Gruber doesn’t return what he stole because his heart grew three sizes. Instead he is shot by John McClane, and falls to his death from the 30th floor of Nakatomi Plaza, but it’s the great use of some tape decorated with the words “Season’s Greetings” that allows McClane to tape a pistol to his back and get the drop on him.
And for a final touch, “Let it Snow” plays as the shreds of Bearer Bonds float down from Nakatomi Plaza and Holly and John McClane hug -- the promise of a very merry Christmas.
Yippee ki-yay and to all a good night.