Die Hard Review: Christmas in July Blogathon 2017

The second entry for the Christmas in July 2017 blogathon comes to us from Rob from MovieRob, or as I like to call him Movie Monster Rob. He has reviewed literally thousands and thousands of movies. If you don’t follow him yet, which is impossible, do so immediately after finishing his review. Speaking of which, Rob brings with him another review of one of his favorite films, Die Hard. Let’s jump right into it!

“If this is their idea of Christmas, I *gotta* be here for New Year’s.” – Argyle

Number of Times Seen – Seriously too many to count (Video, Cable, DVD, 4 May 2000, Jan 2012, 24 Nov 2013, 30 Nov 2014, 4 Nov 2015, 11 Nov 2015 and 13 Jul 2017)

Link to original reviews – Here, Here, Here and Here

When Drew reminded me of his Christmas in July blogathon, I wasn’t quite sure what film I wanted to watch and review that would work well for me.

There are so many great movies that are set around the holiday time and are meant to get you in the right mood for having a jolly time in the winter days of December.

Without a doubt tho, my personal favorite is a film that most people wouldn’t originally think of as a holiday movie because its just an amazing thriller but it lacks a jolly fat guy in a red suit, a slew of reindeers and of course mistletoe.

On the other hand, it really does a wonderful job of still encompassing the important things in life around the holidays – like the love of family and friends.

The whole reason John McClane ends up in LA at the beginning of the film is to try and find a way to reconcile with his wife and see his two children.
Once everything starts to happen here, his love for them is what keeps him going.

His desire to save his wife and her co-workers from these terrorists is punctuated by so many scenes describing and depicting the holiday spirit.

whether its a Santa hat

or Christmas decorations

or a brightly lit Christmas tree

It’s not hard to find the connections to the holiday season.

It’s worth mentioning that even the music and songs played are “Christmas songs” which also help to accentuate the holiday season.

All this film needs to be considered a true Christmas classic is Little Lucy or John McClane declaring “And god bless us everyone.”

Also, doesn’t John’s wife have a holiday spirit name?  Holly.

The biggest question to me tho is what father would bring one humongous teddy bear for his two kids… wouldn’t they fight over it? 😉

There is no doubt in my mind that this is the ultimate Christmas movie.

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – This movie, set during Christmas time in Los Angeles, has the lead thief named Hans Gruber. The Christmas Carol “Silent Night” was composed in Salzburg, Austria by Franz Gruber, a school teacher and church organist. He wrote the melody for a guitar arrangement at the request of the 6-stanza poem’s author Fr. Joseph Mohr, a Roman Catholic priest and assistant pastor at St. Nicholas Church, who wrote it in 1816. Mohr and Gruber first sang the song “Stille Nacht” at midnight mass on December 24, 1818, while Mohr played his guitar. (From IMDB)

Rating – Oscar Worthy 10/10 (no change from original review)

Great review, Rob! Die Hard is one of my favorite Christmas films as well so it is great to see it as part of the blogathon this year.

Tomorrow, SG from Rhyme and Reason kicks off day two of the Christmas in July blogathon. Stop on by to check it out!

Until next time, cheers!


Movie Quote of the Week – 12/4/15

Movie Quote of the Week bannerAnswer to MWL 12/2/15: John McClane (Bruce Willis) – Die Hard

“Come out to the coast, we’ll get together, have a few laughs.” -John McClane

Thanks for everyone’s submissions and one trip to the coast to the following people for answering correctly:

That Other Critic (That Other Critic)
Kim (Tranquil Dreams)
Kira (Film and TV 101)
Rob (Movierob)
Tim (Filmfunkel)

My Fave Five Christmas Movies

It’s that time of year again.  Snow is falling, bright lights decorate houses on every street, the Salvation Army bell ringers are outside every grocery store you can see, and TBS is having a 24-hour A Christmas Story marathon.  Yes, it’s the holiday season.  While you and your family are gathered by the fireplace sipping eggnog, sitting at the table playing a game of cards, or whatever your holiday traditions may be, chances are you do so with a Christmas movie playing.  Everyone has something different they like about the holiday season and there are plenty of movies to reflect that.  Here are my five favorite Christmas movies.

Honorable Mentions) Die Hard & Lethal WeaponLethal Weapon movie poster Die Hard movie poster

I have included Die Hard and Lethal Weapon on this list because they aren’t what could be considered “traditional” Christmas movies.  They take place during Christmas (the lowest requirement for a Christmas film) but that’s about the only relation to Christmas they have.  However, they are both great movies.  And on top of that, they both produced catch phrases that would last throughout both franchises.  They may not be the most traditional of Christmas films, but they are Christmas films nonetheless.

Elf movie poster5) Elf

Will Ferrell’s humor is hit or miss with audiences (based on people I’ve talked to at least).  But in Elf, he hits the mark.  Even those who I know aren’t Ferrell fans enjoy this movie.  The innocent and good natured Buddy the Elf resonates with everyone.  It’s always entertaining to see someone like Buddy who comes from a small town experience New York City for the first time.  There’s something about that fish-out-of-water element in the Big Apple that is so humorous.

4) The Polar ExpressThe Polar Express movie poster

When I was but a wee lad, I enjoyed the book The Polar Express.  Then it was brought onto the big screen, and the sense of wonderment only grew.  It can be difficult to adapt a children’s book into a movie, but The Polar Express shows how to do it correctly, and with style.  The animation uses contrasts efficiently and before Frozen, this was the pinnacle of snow animation, creating a gorgeously unique style that still looks amazing ten years later.

Christmas Vacation movie poster3) Christmas Vacation

Oh Christmas Vacation, how I love you.  I believe this was the first movie from National Lampoon’s Vacation series that I saw, and it is probably the best of the series.  Clark Griswald is once again played by the amazing Chevy Chase, whose comedic timing is spot-on in this film.  Even the supporting cast each get their moments.  But what I would have to say is my favorite part about Christmas Vacation is how it takes traditional holiday events that we loath (or like), such as in-laws staying for a few days or decorating the house with lights, and takes them to the extreme.  Sometimes real-life events make for the most touching.  Check out Natalie’s Christmas Vacation review from my Christmas in July Blogathon.

2) A Christmas StoryA Christmas Story movie poster

This is the Christmas movies of all Christmas movies, or at least TBS thinks so since they play it for 24-hours.  But I would have to agree.  Every kid can relate to Ralphie, the young version played by Peter Billingsley, looking for that on awesome gift under the tree on Christmas morning.  The narration from an older Ralphie, voiced by Jean Shepard, is the perfect compliment to what is going on in the story.  Ralphie’s parents and friends, Ralphie’s daydreams, everything is skewed to fit a child’s perspective and it creates one of the best Christmas films out there.

The Santa Claus movie poster1) The Santa Clause

The Santa Clause was THE Christmas movie of my childhood.  This is the film I do not go without watching every year.  This was one of Tim Allen’s first movies since he started on Home Improvement and he carried much of Tim Taylor into this movie.  I think what appeals to me most is that Scott Calvin, Allen’s character, didn’t want to be Santa Claus, he was selfish and didn’t want the responsibility.  There is a big difference in his attitude between his first and second outings as Santa.  And I couldn’t forget all the cool elf gadgets.  Tinsel, jet packs, the sleigh’s CD dispenser.  Everything is just cool.  The cute little touches, like the Rose Sucha Clatter ladder company, just add to the experience.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!