Loves going out and about in Canberra and writing about her adventures! Also addicted to coffee, high teas, escape rooms, and dressing up.
Published December 2nd 2019
With the arrival of December and the most wonderful time of the year, many of us are busy decking our halls with boughs of holly, setting up and decorating our Christmas trees if we haven't done so already, planning our Christmas parties and Christmas Day feasts, getting our Santa photos done, and madly dashing about getting all the Christmas shopping done too.
However, amid all that festive frenzy, there is a very important debate that rages fiercely every Christmas. And the debate centres around what I think is one of the most crucial questions of all time: Is Die Hard a Christmas movie? Yes, folks. I'm ranking this question up there with other important questions of our time such as 'Who is the best Batman/James Bond/Doctor Who?', 'Is pavlova a Kiwi or an Aussie invention?', 'Team Edward or Team Jacob in the Twilight franchise?', 'Were Ross and Rachel REALLY on a break in Friends?' and 'Do UFOs exist?'
The film Die Hard was released in 1988 and stars Bruce Willis as hero John McClane, a New York cop who goes to California for the Christmas break to visit his children and win back the affection of his wife. John meets his wife at her workplace, Nakatomi Tower, during her company's Christmas party on December 24. But a group of terrorists led by Hans Gruber (played by the delicious Alan Rickman) crash the party and take hostages.
I adore Christmas (so much so that I celebrate Christmas in July and Christmas in December!), and I am a fan of Christmas movies. My favourites include It's A Wonderful Life, every version of A Christmas Carol, Home Alone, all the old Rankin & Bass Christmas specials such as Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and The Year Without A Santa Claus, my new favourite Last Christmas, Love Actually, The Holiday, Miracle on 34th Street, Elf, and The Nightmare Before Christmas. However, I had actually never seen Die Hard, and only because I've never been a fan of Bruce Willis or action flicks in general.
So is Die Hard a Christmas movie or not? After finally watching it, here are five reasons why I think it is:
1. The action takes place on Christmas Eve. Lots of monumental events take place on December 24, or Christmas Eve. Events such as Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer being called by Santa Claus to lead his team of reindeer, or two thieves trying to break into a house that's occupied by a boy who has been left home alone by his family, or a miserly old man called Ebenezer Scrooge being haunted by three spirits, or a baby in an orphanage crawling into Santa's sack and ending up in the North Pole and being raised as an Elf, or a man contemplating suicide being saved by a guardian angel, or even a pregnant woman being forced to give birth in a stable with all the animals because there's no room for her in any of the town's inns. In Die Hard, a monumental event takes place on Christmas Eve when European terrorists take over a work Christmas party at Nakatomi Tower. In my opinion, that alone classifies it as a Christmas movie!
2. The Die Hard soundtrack includes Christmas music. It's Christmas, so of course, there's Christmas music in Die Hard such as the popular Christmas classics Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow! and Winter Wonderland, as well as Beethoven's Ode To Joy which is linked with the Christmas season.
3. There's hope and joy and all that feel-good Christmas stuff. Christmas movies generally make you feel good and full of joy and at peace with the world and full of love for all of humanity, and so forth. Well, when John McClane saves the hostages from Hans Gruber and his band of gun-loving terrorists and you see Hans Gruber falling off Nakatomi Tower, then you do feel good and full of joy and at peace with the world and full of love for all of humanity and Bruce Willis.
This might be stretching the argument just a little bit, but Alan Rickman is not just a supervillain in this movie. He's also a supervillain in Love Actually and that is regarded as an all-time favourite Christmas movie. So the fact that Alan Rickman is playing another villain on Christmas Eve absolutely qualifies Die Hard as a Christmas movie!
5. Did I say that the action takes place on Christmas Eve? So yes, Die Hard IS a Christmas movie!
Bruce Willis can disagree if he wants to but I am absolutely, positively certain that Die Hard is, in fact, a Christmas movie. I don't agree with Twentieth Century Fox that it's the greatest Christmas story ever told (because I think Monty Python's Life of Brian is actually the greatest Christmas story ever told!) but from this Christmas and every Christmas from now on, I will be watching Die Hard and waiting breathlessly for that wonderful moment when Hans Gruber falls off Nakatomi Tower.