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Die Hard (1988)

Trailer
1:28 | Trailer
An NYPD officer tries to save his wife and several others taken hostage by German terrorists during a Christmas party at the Nakatomi Plaza in Los Angeles.

Director:

John McTiernan

Writers:

Roderick Thorp (novel), Jeb Stuart (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Popularity
557 ( 80)
Top Rated Movies #127 | Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 8 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Bruce Willis ... John McClane
Bonnie Bedelia ... Holly Gennaro McClane
Reginald VelJohnson ... Sgt. Al Powell
Paul Gleason ... Dwayne T. Robinson
De'voreaux White ... Argyle
William Atherton ... Thornburg
Hart Bochner ... Ellis
James Shigeta ... Takagi
Alan Rickman ... Hans Gruber
Alexander Godunov ... Karl
Bruno Doyon Bruno Doyon ... Franco
Andreas Wisniewski ... Tony
Clarence Gilyard Jr. ... Theo
Joey Plewa Joey Plewa ... Alexander
Lorenzo Caccialanza ... Marco
Learn more

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Storyline

NYPD cop John McClane goes on a Christmas vacation to visit his wife Holly in Los Angeles where she works for the Nakatomi Corporation. While they are at the Nakatomi headquarters for a Christmas party, a group of robbers led by Hans Gruber take control of the building and hold everyone hostage, with the exception of John, while they plan to perform a lucrative heist. Unable to escape and with no immediate police response, John is forced to take matters into his own hands. Written by Sam

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Twelve terrorists. One cop. The odds are against John McClane... That's just the way he likes it. See more »

Genres:

Action | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jeb Stuart was having difficulty writing the screenplay until he had a near-death experience while driving at night in Los Angeles after a fight with his wife. He was driving behind a truck carrying refrigerators, and one of the fridge boxes fell out of the truck. Luckily for him, the box was empty. He realized that if he had died, he wouldn't have been able to apologize to his wife. This inspired him to give clear motivations to John McClane and Holly's characters: they wanted to reunite with each other after having a fight. See more »

Goofs

McClane swings through the window on the hose and lands on his back. In the next shot, he's on his chest. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Businessman: You don't like flying, do you?
John McClane: What gives you that idea?
Businessman: You wanna know the secret to surviving air travel? After you get where you're going, take off your shoes and your socks then walk around on the rug bare foot and make fists with your toes.
John McClane: Fists with your toes?
Businessman: I know, I know, it sounds crazy. Trust me, I've been doing it for nine years. Yes sir, better than a shower and a hot cup of coffee.
John McClane: Okay.
[the businessman sees John's gun]
John McClane: It's okay, I'm a cop. Trust me, I've been doing this...
See more »

Crazy Credits

In the widescreen version, the 20th Century Fox logo is stretched. See more »

Alternate Versions

German TV and video versions are cut for violence to get a 16-rating. Several scenes are shortened or deleted. Theses are the main-changes:
  • The killing of the second guard in the lobby
  • The execution of Mr. Takagi
  • McClane shoots a terrorist in the knees 4 times
  • The fight between Karl and McClane
  • Karl's Death: we only see a single bullet-impact
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Cheermonger: Vanilla Isis: Behind the Tantrum (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

Resolution & Hyperspace
(uncredited)
from Aliens (1986)
Composed by James Horner
See more »

User Reviews

Ladies and gentleman, Mr.Bruce Willis, Movie Star
6 March 2003 | by george.schmidtSee all my reviews

DIE HARD (1988) **** Bruce Willis, Alan Rickman, Bonnie Bedelia, Alexander Godunov, Reginald Vel Johnson, William Atherton, Paul Gleason, Hart Bochner, Robert Davi. NYC cop John McClane (Willis in his star-making iconic role) is visiting LA at Christmas to reconnect with his estranged wife Bedelia who is at an office party that becomes a nightmare when a group of terrorists take over the building led by Hans Gruber (perfect Rickman) a German nutjob out to filch millions in bonds in the vault of the Japanese company. As the " fly in the ointment", Willis does his damnedest to stop him at all costs relying on his street-smarts and out-guessing as time ticks away. Great blend of action suspense and much welcomed humor. Best bit: Willis plunging from a rooftop attack by the FBI (thinking the disheveled cop is one of the bad guys!) attached to a fire hose and shooting his way into an empty office! Hair-raising and exhilirating fun for all. "Yippiee-Kay-Ay !!!!" (Dir: John McTiernan)


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English | German | Italian | Japanese

Release Date:

20 July 1988 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Die Hard See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$28,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$601,851, 17 July 1988

Gross USA:

$83,519,093

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$141,482,154
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| Dolby Stereo (35 mm prints) (4 channels)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »

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