'Tis the season to be jolly, which means lots of tinsel, wrapping paper, empty bank accounts and the same damn Christmas music playing over and over. But it also means we have the perfect excuse to watch Die Hard - the ULTIMATE Christmas movie - as many times as we want.
It's my pick for Best Christmas Movie in the latest LAMBracket from The Large Association of Movie Blogs, and I need your help. You can vote for it over at the LAMB's website, or on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
Now many of you are probably thinking; Die Hard? That's not a Christmas movie! Well respectfully, you're wrong. I don't think Die Hard could get any more Christmassy. For one thing, it's on TV every December. The story takes place during a party on Christmas Eve. There's plenty of decorations, trees and music, not to mention the most inventive use of Christmas tape the world has ever seen. Our hero even sends his enemies a heart-warming Christmas message, "Ho-Ho-Ho". And let's not forget, McClane pulls off the greatest Christmas miracle in the history of Christmas miracles - saving 30 hostages...and his marriage. Wait, does that make it two miracles? Either way, if all that doesn't make it a Christmas movie, I don't know what will.
Granted, Die Hard isn't warm and fuzzy like most Christmas movies. But who said all Christmas movies have to be warm and fuzzy anyway? With Santa Claus, Frosty the Snowman, Jingle Bells and all that other Christmas stuff in overdrive, wouldn't you rather watch a tired, pissed off cop run bare-foot around a building on Christmas Eve, killing terrorists? Let's face it, Die Hard is the definitive action movie, a simple - yet fairly believable - story, with interesting characters, filled with great action set-pieces, shootouts and one-liners...never forget the one-liners! And even after all that, Die Hard still manages to leave you with that Christmassy feeling, every time. Filmmakers have been trying - and mostly failing - to re-capture that magic for 30 years.
Then there's the underdog himself, John McClane, the fly in the ointment, the monkey in the wrench, the pain in the ass. He's a man under immense pressure, up against seemingly insurmountable odds, who still manages to find the time to annoy the living shit out of his opponents, and in hilarious ways. Bruce Willis was the perfect choice for this role, he plays McClane in a way that's not only believable, it's relatable. McClane isn't a superhero, or even a super soldier, he's just an average guy trying to fix his marriage. He wasn't supposed to be there, he certainly doesn't want to be there, but he knows he's the only chance those hostages have. I wouldn't want to be in his shoes - if that's the right way to put it - but I love rooting for him every time I watch him fuck up Hans Gruber's Christmas.
Short of putting up a Christmas tree, we don't really have any Christmas traditions in my house. In fact, the closest we come is sitting down every Christmas Eve to watch the ULTIMATE Christmas movie...Die Hard.
Please head over to either the LAMBsite, Facebook, Instagram or Twitter to vote Die Hard the Best Christmas Movie.