Twelve years after Die Hard with a Vengeance, the third and previous film in the Die Hard franchise, Die Hard 4.0 finds John McClane (Bruce Willis) a few years older, not any happier, and just as kick-ass as ever. Right after he has a fight with his college-age daughter (Mary Elizabeth Winstead), a call comes in to pick up a hacker (Justin Long, Dodgeball) who might help the FBI learn something about a brief security blip in their systems. Now any Die Hard fan knows that this is when the assassins with foreign accents and high-powered weaponry show up, telling McClane that once again he's stumbled into an assignment that's anything but routine. Once that wreckage has cleared, it is revealed that the hacker is only one of many hackers who are being targeted for extermination after they helped set up a "fire sale," a three-pronged cyberattack designed to bring down the entire country by crippling its transportation, finances, and utilities. That plan is now being put into action by a mysterious team (Timothy Olyphant, Deadwood, and Maggie Q, Mission: Impossible 3) that seems to be operating under the government's noses. Die Hard 4.0 uses some of the cat-and-mouse elements of Die Hard with a Vengeance along with some of the pick-'em-off-one-by-one elements of the now-classic original movie. And it's the most consistently enjoyable installment of the franchise since the original, with eye-popping stunts (directed by Len Wiseman of the Underworld franchise), good humour, and Willis's ability to toss off a quip while barely alive. Yippee-ki-ay! --David Horiuchi
After a twelve-year hiatus, Bruce Willis is back as New York City detective John McClane, who still plays by his own set of rules. Following DIE HARD (1988), DIE HARD 2 (1990), and DIE HARD WITH A VENGEANCE (1995), the fourth instalment in the popular action series stars DEADWOOD's Timothy Olyphant as Thomas Gabriel, an evil mastermind who is determined to bring down the entire infrastructure of the United States on Independence Day, sending the country into anarchy and chaos. Joining him on his mission of destruction is the elegant Mai, played by Maggie Q from MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE III. McClane becomes involved when he gets caught in the crossfire while transporting prisoner Matt Farrell (Justin Long, IDIOCRACY), a hacker extraordinaire who is the perfect complement to the old-school McClane, who eschews mobile phones, computers, and doing anything the easy way. But when Gabriel kidnaps McClane's daughter, Lucy (Mary Elizabeth Winstead, DEATH PROOF), it gets personal. Full of the sarcastic humour, exciting action sequences--including a car flying into a helicopter--and fun characters that have defined the series, DIE HARD 4.0 is an excellent addition, directed by Len Wiseman (UNDERWORLD). The movie also features Kevin Smith as a computer geek known as Warlock, who still lives in his mother's basement.