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This time around John McClaine (Bruce Willis) is not stuck in a high-rise office building, but at an airport where it's Christmas Eve again and he is hoping to pick-up his wife from an arriving flight. Not too far away from the airport, another group of terrorists led by Colonel Stewart (William Sadler) are plotting to takeover the runways at Dulles International Airport in Washington D.C. With a list of demands that includes releasing a high-profile drug lord, the terrorists will wreck total havoc if the demands aren't met. Of course McClaine suddenly gets involved despite repeated warnings by airport security not to. McClaine’s detective work soon gets involved with the terrorists which leads him throughout the airport, the runaways and the surrounding areas.

Die Hard 2: Die Harder - Special Edition
Renny Harlin directs this time and he does a fairly efficient job in setting up the story and then moving it along at a swift pace. However, the story does have its moments where it meanders along and I couldn't help but look at my watch and wonder when it all was going to end.

Willis is once again perfect as the one-man army who must battle another group of terrorists. His witty banter taunts the terrorists. Sadler is a fantastic villain who is threatening, intense and believes that his actions are necessary. However, I felt that his character's true nature and meaning in the film was never fully developed. It seems that there were scenes or dialogue that were left on the cutting room floor that could have given Sadler a more menacing character.

I didn't dislike "Die Hard 2", but I didn’t love it either. The action scenes are intense, engaging and entertaining. However, it seemed at times that there was too much. As a sequel I wasn't expecting to see another superior film as the first one, rarely do sequels produce a better film as the original anyway. However, the story line, the locations, and the actors did make this film entertaining, original and fresh in the consistent retread of the action genre.

Video
Like the first film, Fox had released this film a few years ago and that release contained a non-anamorphic transfer. Viewers will be pleased to know that Die Hard 2: Die Harder – Special Edition does indeed carry a 2.35:1 anamorphic transfer that looks great! Picture is extremely crisp and smooth and sharpness and detail looks fantastic.

Once again, I hardly noticed any speckles are artifacts throughout the film. Although there were a few scenes that appeared grainy and hazy just slightly, but overall the picture was clean and sharp, making my viewing experience a good one!

The colors were right on as well. Although most of the film takes place in dark environments or in snowy exterior scenes, the colors that appeared on the interior scenes were strong and natural.

Die Hard 2: Die Harder - Special Edition
Audio
Just like the original film, "Die Hard 2: Die Harder" is presented in Dolby Digital 5.1 and DTS 5.1. The Surround Sounds are put to use here during many of the action sequences that actually gives your subwoofer and other speakers quite the workout.

There are even moments where you may actually feel as if you were in the snowstorm as the winter wind during a snowstorm really shines through. There are sequences throughout this film that are dialogue heavy. In those instances, most of the discussions utilize the front speakers.

The audio throughout this film was clean and crisp with a good example of definition. The sound was strong and clear which certainly enhanced this film.

Extas
Although not labeled as a part of Fox’s 5-Star Collection line, the Special Edition of Die Hard 2 has its fair share of extra features that fans of the film should enjoy.

A Commentary track from director Renny Harlin is entertaining and energetic where he shares his stories about making the film and the desire to make a strong film. As I was listening to this track, it's obvious that Harlin was excited about making a sequel to the blockbuster original. This track ranks in my list of great commentary tracks. So many commentaries these days are boring, unoriginal and not enjoyable to listen to, this one however is a good one!

There is also a Television Special which has a running time of approximately 23 minutes that is somewhat informative about how some of the larger action scenes were shot. In addition a much shorter promotional featurette is contained herein.

Four deleted scenes are included, however I don't necessarily count this as an added feature as they aren't very long and they don't really contain any information that would have added anything to the feature. Hence, I suppose that is why they were deleted. Some viewers may find these enjoyable.

There are five scenes that focus on the visual effects of the film. The first two, "The Ejector Seat" and "Airport Runway" discuss how the effects were done. The other three scenes, "Chopper", "Airplane Models" and "Wing Fight" are presented before and after split-screen comparisons. All five sequences are fascinating and give an interesting view in the movie making process and visual effects.

Die Hard 2: Die Harder - Special Edition
Two behind the scenes featurettes are added that explain how the scenes were accomplished and a short, 4-minute featurette called "Breaking The Ice" and an 8-minute featurette on the "Chaos On The Conveyor Belt" - scene are included. A third storyboard-to-film comparison for the "Skywalk Ambush" scene has also been added. All three of these featurette's are somewhat interesting and give additional information on the making of this film.

Finally, there are four trailers and one television spot and promotional interviews with Harlin and Sadler included.

Overall
Die Hard 2: Die Harder is another excellent release from Twentieth Century Fox. This studio really knows how to make DVD releases and their additional material that is added only adds more value to their films. The movie itself is pretty good, although not as impressive as the original. The video and audio aspects of this DVD are very strong and only add to this DVD edition. And for those viewers who just gotta have more, this DVD edition includes several extra features that should satisfy any appetite for more of Die Hard 2.


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