You need to know that I really wanted to love A Good Day to Die Hard.
John McClane is my hero. I saw the original Die Hard way to young (though it was on USA). And I loved all the sequels. Yes, even number 2. I saw a midnight showing of 2007′s Live Free or Die Hard and love it.
So when I heard Die Hard 5 was in the works, I was ready. Ready to be blown away. Ready to follow an unwilling John McClane on another seat-of-his-pants adventure to save the world and stop some bad guys from stealing some money (it’s always about the money) while doing his best to be a family man.
So why did A Good Day to Die Hard fall so flat?
At first glance, Good Day has all the quintessential Die Hard elements. McClane is a family man – this time he’s trying to reconnect with his estranged son. Featuring McClane’s kids in the two most recent installments didn’t bother me like it does a lot of people. We met the kids in the first film, and I like to see how their relationship with John has grown up. It’s a nice way to preserve the heart his wife Holly provided the first two films without rehashing the on-again, off-again relationship they had.
As for action, Good Day had tons, and it was mostly really good. The direction was mostly good, and surprisingly easily to follow in the era of frenetic shaky-cams. The sets were big, the one-liners (uttered of course by McClane and Son) were plentiful and of course there was a con.