Live Free or Die Hard 

(Bruce Willis, bigger, better and balder, but not getting any younger), "Live Free" has him once again saving the world from terrorists. However, this time they're not foreign and swarthy, but good ol' Americans, led by a cyber-savvy baddie (Timothy Olyphant) using technology to shut down the entire world.

 

As is his wont, McClane unknowingly stumbles into the morass, but is aided by a wisecracking hacker (Justin Long). The stakes get personal when the goons take McClane's estranged daughter (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) hostage. Oh, no, you di'n't!

 

The charm of the "Die Hard" formula has always been with McClane's dumb luck "¦ and his immense, on-the-fly skills at transforming into a one-man army. Here, "Underworld" auteur Len Wiseman deviates from that a little, casting McClane in more of a generic superhero role. The film is not without its speed bumps (Kevin Smith), but still delivers where it counts: high-octane, fast-moving, thrill-a-minute action.

 

Extras include interesting making-of segments, a terrible music video and a slightly discomforting segment of 20th Century Fox studio head Tom Rothman awkwardly covering the history of the "Die Hard" cash cow.

 

"?Rod Lott

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