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Die Hard 4.0: Ultimate Action Edition

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If, in the words of Bruce Willis, John McClane is “the rotary phone of cops”, then Die Hard 4.0 is the Jackanory of action movies: a watered-down, family-friendly pic that’s as tame as its CGI truck-versus-jet climax. Twelve years on from Die Hard With A Vengeance, it’s not just Bruce’s hair that’s gone AWOL. Judging by Len Wiseman’s belated sequel, he’s also missing his testicles…

That’s not to say there’s no enjoyment to be had watching the wise-cracking saviour of Nakatomi Tower foil whitebread hacker Timothy Olyphant’s hi-tech plan to bring Uncle Sam to his knees. And Willis’ match-up with computer geek Justin Long gets at least as many yuks as his 1995 double-act with Samuel L. It’s just that there’s no real menace to underpin the flick’s post-9/11 resonances: it’s a terrorist caper with no terror, built around a hero so sanitised he can’t even utter his catchphrase.

You get much more bang for your buck with this two-disc edition, which has a hefty hour-and-a-half Making Of, a listenable commentary from Wiseman and Willis (who is lightly grilled by co-star Kevin Smith), and an amusing gag reel. Best by far, however, is mock-rockers Guyz Nite’s hilarious Die Hard parody with its “Yippee ki-yay, motherfucker!” chorus. How come they can say it when McClane can’t?

 

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