This memorial day weekend serves as the 15th anniversary of the release of ‘Die Hard with a Vengeance’. The third installment in the incredibly popular action franchise. Upon it’s arrival in May of 1995, critics and audiences alike praised the film for it’s breakneck pace and clever dialogue. Adding Samuel L. Jackson’s character of Zeus Carver, was a calculated risk that only enhanced the film. Giving Willis a partner, especially a ‘black guy’ from Harlem was an inspired touch. Jackson and Willis’s banter about race in NY during the 90’s is poignant and sometime hysterical. But let’s not forget this is a ‘Die Hard’ movie, no less than 60 seconds into the picture, the first bomb explodes. For the next 2hrs and ten minutes, the action doesn’t stop. Director John Mctiernan, helmer of the first and still best ‘Die Hard’, slickly navigates this cinematic roller coaster. There are at least five blood pumping action sequences, the cab-ride through central park, the subway explosion, Willis shooting it out inside an elevator, a dump truck outrunning a wall of water and the climactic shoot-out aboard a boat full of explosives. This is one of my personal favorites when it comes to summertime cinematic escapism. It would take another 12years to get ‘Live Free or Die Hard’ to the screen in 2007. However ‘DH3’ still holds up well and is one of the last action epics from the pre ‘Matrix’ -era, that doesn’t seem dated.
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