Film review: A Good Day to Die Hard

If you want to feel old, ponder this - it is 25 years since the first Die Hard movie was released. These films have been going for so long that when they started Bruce Willis still had hair.

Director: John Moore
Cast: Bruce Willis, Jai Courtney, Sebastian Koch, Yuliya Snigir, Radivoje Bukvic
Rating: (M)
3 stars (out of 5)

A Good Day to Die Hard (Hoyts and Rialto) is a bit of a departure from the previous four in that this is the first of the five Die Hard films that was actually written as an original Die Hard script.

Using other people's leftovers has worked well for the franchise in the past, and maybe they should have stuck with it because setting the film in Russia throws out the balance. Previously we could buy into John McClane's over-the-top behaviour because he was defending his home patch. A Good Day to Die Hard has him buzzing off to Moscow because of some trouble his estranged son Jack (Jai Courtney) is in.

Only it turns out that Jack is a CIA operative running an elaborate mission to help a Russian dissident. Jack's mission hits the fan and it turns out he needs his old man's help after all.

Extreme family bonding has its laugh-out-loud moments, but here we are laughing at McClane, not with him.

Best thing: There is a mad enjoyment to watching this, especially if you put your brain in neutral.

Worst thing: Forget about believable - most of the time it does not even make sense.

See it with: A soft spot for watching Willis jump off buildings.

By Christine Powley.