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Originally published February 13, 2013 at 11:22 AM | Page modified February 14, 2013 at 2:32 PM

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‘A Good Day to Die Hard’: Lots of whuppin’ and special effects

A movie review of “A Good Day to Die Hard,” the fifth go-round for Bruce Willis as New York copper John McClane. This time there’s an estranged son (Jai Courtney), no real story to speak of and infinite special effects.

Special to The Seattle Times

Movie Review 2 stars

“A Good Day to Die Hard,” with Bruce Willis, Jai Courtney, Sebastian Koch, Rasha Bukvic. Directed by John Moore, from a screenplay by Skip Woods and Jason Keller.
97 minutes. Rated R for violence and language. Several theaters.

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Thanks, that's one of the funniest reviews I have ever read. Still laughing ;-) MORE
hey now--the family that lays waste to Moscow together, stays together. Now if he could... MORE
I thought his son was in the first Die Hard in the photo on mom's desk along with his s... MORE


Starring: Bruce Willis! And a million bullets!

Co-starring: Eighty zillion shards of broken glass!

Also: Flying cars! Look! There goes one now. Sailing off a Moscow overpass and smashing onto traffic below. What? You missed that? No worries. Another will be airborne in no time. And another, doing a midair pirouette. Look at it twirl. Oooh, pretty.

It’s “A Good Day to Die Hard,” aka “We’ve Got No Story To Speak Of But We Do Have an Infinite Special Effects Budget and We’re Not Afraid To Spend It.”

It’s the fifth turn for Willis on the “Die Hard” merry-go-round. The previous entries in the immensely popular series about the high-caliber misadventures of trouble-
magnet New York copper John McClane have been tenuously tethered to something vaguely resembling reality. But this one? Pfff! We’re off to Cloud Cuckooland.

This time, John’s got a son, Jack (Jai Courtney), never seen and barely hinted at in earlier iterations. He’s a deep-cover CIA spy on a mission to Moscow to save the skin of a Russian prisoner (Sebastian Koch) who holds the key to some kind of super secret having to do with the melted-down Chernobyl reactor.

Father and son are estranged. On a vacation to Moscow to try to bind up familial wounds, McClane just happens — just happens! — to run across his offspring who’s in the midst of pulling off a daring, daylight, downtown one-man rescue of the Russian dude. The son snappishly tells his dad to buzz off — they’re estranged! — but then the bullets fly and the car crashes commence and suddenly: Boom! Manly bonding begins.

“Me and my boy here, we’re gonna put a whuppin’ on ya!” Dad says at one point to some nasty customers. Smeared with blood, automatic weapons blazing, they lay a goodly portion of Moscow and some of Chernobyl to waste. Some may call it mindless mayhem, but here it goes by another name: family values.

Soren Andersen:

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