New York City detective John McClane (Willis) finds himself trapped in a washroom when terrorists take over the high-rise building in LA, where he has traveled to meet his estranged wife Holly (Bedelia) for a Christmas party. Barefoot and armed with a single handgun, McClane slips away and up several flights, where he launches an ingenious, one-man guerilla war on the thieving thugs, led by wily mastermind Hans Gruber (Rickman).
McTiernan's "Die Hard" not only retooled the conventions of the modern action-thriller with its wisecracking lone-wolf cop, it also boosted "Moonlighting" star Willis from smug TV gumshoe to A-list actor. His McClane operates his campaign against Gruber's super-thieves with clever booby traps and a lot of cheeky macho chatter, via a "borrowed" walkie-talkie. He also takes a lot of punishment (but you should see the other guys!). Rickman's wonderfully sinister turn as a haughty villain only adds to the excitement. For fans of clever, stunt-heavy, heart-racing suspense, "Die Hard" will never expire.