The Die Hard series could have gone any number of ways. The third installment featuring Samuel L. Jackson was less than it could have been so fans of the series were guarded when Live Free or Die Hard was released. It could have been a disaster, it could have been just horrible, it could have been just so-so or it could have been as it was: fantastic.
Live Free or Die Hard is a worthy successor to the original Die Hard. In every way imaginable Live Free meets or exceeds the excitement factor of the original and even adds to the myth of John McClane. This time out McClane is asked to escort hacker Matt Farrell (played by Justin Long) to the F.B.I. for questioning regarding a break in on the F.B.I. cybersecurity center. Farrell is just one of a dozen or so hired black hats that secured discreet pieces of information for a criminal mastermind who puts the puzzle together for an even bigger crime.
Timothy Olyphant (Deadwood) plays Thomas Gabriel the master cyber criminal who, in league with his multitalented martial arts girlfriend Mai (played by Maggie Q), is planning on crashing the system. The idea of pressing the reset button on the modern era has been played with before but this time we get a criminal who has the chops to actually do the job. As usual the bad guys have one little problem – a monkey in the wrench – a fly in the ointment by the name of John McClane. Thomas Gabriel has one advantage over all the other perps that McClane has had to deal with, Gabriel really does know everything including where McClanes estranged daughter lives. Gabriel uses all his knowledge to try and prevent McClane from delivering his charge to the F.B.I.
As any fan of the series is aware nothing will stop John McClane once he has decided on a course of action and the same holds true in Live Free or Die Hard. McClane is relentless in his pursuit of Gabriel. The stunt sequences are once again at the forefront of this movie with some of the most outrageous stunts and effects that the Die Hard series has seen – surfing on a jet might just qualify as one of the funniest and most exciting moments in action movie history.
Live Free or Die Hard is an absolute must see.