We all know the feeling.
We all know the feeling. You’ve just stuffed yourself silly with Turkey, Sprouts and the works at the dinner table and all you want to do is retire to the comfy sofa and watch a classic Christmas movie. But which? With every genre under the sun covered in Christmas spirit, it is near on impossible to please the whole family, so why not pick a Christmas movie that is actually good? Forget about Elf and Home Alone, put Die Hard into your DVD player this Christmas.
Yes, Bruce Willis’ 1988 portrayal of the kick-arse cop John McLane is the ultimate Christmas movie. “But what of the constant swearing and violence, it is hardly a family film, is it?” I hear you cry. It doesn’t matter. Granny will be passed out in her armchair after one too many sherry’s and the youngsters will either be distracted by a mountain of toys or have worked themselves up into such excitement in the morning, they will have crashed on the living room floor. Putting the violence to one side Die Hard does have some very stereotypical Christmassy themes running throughout:
From gangster rap carols in Argyle’s car to Vaughn Monroe’s “Let it snow” we are treated to a barrage of Christmas tunes to make us feel festive. By Christmas day you will be fed up of The Pogues, Band Aid and Slade, so the less commercial Christmas songs will give your tired ears a rest. While watching McLane pit his wits against the terrorist leader Hans Gruber, played by Alan Rickman, you will forget all about the torture your ears have gone under thanks to Wizzard and co.
There is no bigger theme in a Christmas movie than romance and, if you think about it, Die Hard is just a soppy Christmas love story with some terrorists thrown into the mix. McLane heads to Los Angeles on Christmas eve in an attempt to rescue his failing marriage. Arriving at the office Christmas party (the birthplace of many an office fling), McLane is quickly forced to have to fight off a horde of terrorists to save his wife.
It may not have the quirky Christmas comedy of Will Ferrel running round New York dressed as a giant elf, but Willis does lighten the mood of a terrorist situation with some killer one-liners. Whether it be shouting at emergency call operators “Does it sound like I’m ordering a pizza?” or complaining about a terrorists shoes not fitting “9 million terrorists and I gotta kill the one with feet smaller than my sister,” McLane makes Die Hard as funny as it is exhilarating.
A happy ending
What sort of Christmas movie ends badly? None of them! There are hardly any endings happier than Die Hard, as John and Holly walk off into the distance together, Sgt Powell has overcome his fear of firing his weapon and can get back to his real job and $600million fall from the sky. A few innocent hostages may have been killed, but, as it is Christmas, we can’t help but think of the positives!