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 (based on the novel by), Jeb Stuart (screenplay by) | 1 more credit »
Popularity
641 ( 52)
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
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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

Don Johnson and Richard Dean Anderson, both established action stars in television, were considered for the role of John McClane. See more »

Goofs

In the opening shot of the movie McClane's plane lands at daylight at the LA airport. In one of the next shots Holly tells her secretary that it is 5.40 PM in the afternoon. It should have been dark when McClane landed. 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...
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Crazy Credits

Film title logo at the end of the closing credits. See more »

Alternate Versions

The Ultimate edition DVD contains the following deleted/extended scenes:
  • Extended power shutdown sequence.
  • Extended opening flight scene.
  • Brief dialogue in the first Hans/McClane confrontation.
  • Extended scene where Robinson/Powell brief the FBI on the tower situation.
  • Brief dialogue when Hans interrogates Takagi.
  • Brief dialogue after Theo says "You didn't bring me along for my charming personality".
  • Extended/alternate dialogue in McClane/Powell conversation after McClane uses the plastic explosives.
  • Brief scene of FBI agents getting stuck in thorn bushes as they make their way towards the building.
  • At the end, McClane says "You got a warranty for this (Holly's watch, a gift from Ellis)?" to which Holly laughs.
  • Argyle's dialogue as Powell's police cruiser flies by in the background.
  • Brief Ellis dialogue reacting to the terrorist intrusion.
  • City engineer briefly coughs before pulling out the power cord.
  • Brief dialogue in Hans/Karl argument about "neutralizing" McClane.
  • Additional Holly dialogue after seeing Karl's reaction to McClane's escape.
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Connections

Referenced in The Blacklist: Anslo Garrick (No. 16) (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Christmas in Hollis
Written by Joseph Simmons, Darryl McDaniels and Jam Master Jay
Performed by Run-D.M.C.
Courtesy of Profile Records, Inc.
Contains a sample of "Back Door Santa"
Written by Clarence Carter and Marcus Daniel
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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

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:

$83,844,093

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$141,603,197
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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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
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