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Die Hard 2Die Hard 2, the second Die Hard movie, was directed by Renny Harlin and released on Wednesday, July 4, 1990. It stars Bruce Willis, reprising his role as police detective John McClane, and co-stars Bonnie Bedelia (reprising her role as Mrs. McClane), William Sadler, William Atherton, Dennis Franz, Fred Dalton Thompson and John Amos. It is sometimes erroneously listed as Die Hard 2: Die Harder, conflating the official on screen title and marketing phrase used in poster art and elsewhere, including the label on the original VHS tape.
McClane is waiting for his wife to land at Washington's Dulles Airport when terrorists take over. He must stop the terrorists before his wife's plane, circling the airport, runs out of fuel and crashes.
The movie is based on a novel by Walter Wager entitled 58 minutes. The novel has the same premise: a cop must stop terrorists who take an airport hostage while his wife's plane circles overhead. He has 58 minutes to do so before the plane crashes.
Die Hard 2 : Synopsis
Die Hard 2: Die Harder Mini Poster
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The story begins on Christmas day, possibly in 1990 (this is implied from McClane's wife saying "we're in the nineties" and from the airplane-showing of the Simpsons episode There's No Disgrace Like Home later on in the movie, which was first broadcast on January 28 1990) and exactly one year after the Nakatomi Plaza incident. (At one point in the film, McClane mentions that he was in a similar situation with terrorists 'last year'.) We find John McClane, now an L.A. cop after his reconciliation with wife Holly Gennero/McClane, at Dulles Airport near Washington DC, waiting for her to arrive from California (It seems that Holly Genneros parents live in Washington). After arguing with airport police about towing his in-laws' car, John hangs out at an airport lounge. He becomes suspicious when he see a group of men, dressed in Army fatigues, pass a package between them and disappear into a restricted area. He follows them and a gunfight ensues. McClane kills one of the men, the other escapes. McClane demands to talk to the head of airport security, the hotheaded Captain Lorenzo, who dismisses McClane's report as "punks stealing luggage." However, McClane strongly disagrees considering one of the assailants was wielding a rare porcelain gun designed to evade metal detectors, something an ordinary thief would not have. (In reality, there is no such weapon of this kind.)
McClane storms off and investigates on his own. He takes fingerprints from the corpse of the mercenary he killed and faxes them to Al Powell (his police officer ally from the first film) who runs them through several databases, including Interpol. The soldier's record indicates that he is dead, a deliberately misstated fact to give him a covert identity. McClane suspects that the man is part of a plot to seize control of the airport. With weather conditions worsening, a rogue Army officer, Colonel Stuart, plans to hold the approaching planes and their passengers and crew hostage until he can secure a despotic Central American general, Esperanza, who is arriving at airport after his arrest in his own country. (Esperanza is meant to represent the Panamanian drug lord, Manuel Noriega.) Stuart's team infiltrated the airport to plant a transmitter to monitor all communications of arrivals and landings of aircraft at Dulles. Stuart has also set up his operational base in a nearby church and has tapped directly into Dulles' traffic control tower . McClane sneaks into the tower and speaks directly to the head of air traffic control, Trudeau, about the man he killed earlier. At that moment, Stuart commences his operation and takes control of the airport. Despite his efforts, and because of the appearance of a reporter, Samantha Cole, McClane is ejected from the tower. As he descends in the elevator with Cole, she tips him about Stuart, who’d she’d seen earlier. McClane makes the connection; Stuart was forced from his position by Congress on possible corruption grounds and now seeks revenge. McClane slips out of the elevator through the ceiling and finds himself in the underground maintenance area of the airport.
Trudeau and his crew contact the approaching planes and inform the cabin crews that they will be unable to land (they do not mention that terrorists have taken control of the airport and its communications and navigation systems) and must circle the airport. Trudeau’s communications director, Barnes, takes a team to a new antenna outpost to restore communication with the planes. He and Lorenzo’s SWAT team are attacked by a detachment of Stuart’s men. Barnes is about to be killed when McClane appears and kills the rest of Stuart’s men in a gun battle. (Before being forced out of the control tower, McClane overheard the location of the antenna array.) After a hostile conversation via two-way radio, Stuart retaliates for the deaths of his crew by crashing a British flight, killing everyone on board despite McClane's desperate attempts to avert the mass murder. McClane returns to the underground maintenance level. The maintenance worker, Marvin, who previously helped him locate the antenna tower, has a two-way radio dropped by one of Stuart’s crew. The radio chatter tells McClane that Esperanza’s plane is about to arrive. (Esperanza has killed the transport crew and now controls the plane himself.) McClane rushes to the landing site and apprehends Esperanza, although briefly, until Stuart and his men show up to retrieve the general themselves. McClane hides in the cockpit of Esperanza’s plane. Stuart and his crew first empty their submachine guns into the plane, and then toss several grenades inside. McClane straps himself into the pilot’s ejector seat and escapes the blast by engaging the escape function. Back at the airport, a Army Special Forces unit arrives. Their leader, Major Grant, once served with Stuart and claims to know his tactics. Barnes surmises that Stuart’s command post is near the airport. He and McClane find the church where Stuart is hiding. Shortly after McClane kills one of Stuart’s guards, Grant shows up and a gunfight ensues. Stuart, his men, and Esperanza escape on snowmobiles. McClane chases after them but is stopped by Stuart, who thinks he has finally killed his adversary.
McClane returns to the security office at Dulles and reveals to Lorenzo that Grant and Stuart are actually working together (McClane was using a gun taken from a rogue armyman, which leads to him realising they were using blanks in the fight against the Special Forces). Lorenzo mobilizes his police forces to converge on the hangar containing the Boeing 747 that Stuart has requested as an escape vehicle. The crowds in the airport have been thrown into panic due to a news report from Richard Thornburg aboard the same plane that McClane’s wife is a passenger on. (His partner has audio receiving equipment that can tap into the tower communications.) Holly renders him unconscious with a stun gun carried by the woman sitting next to her. McClane finds Samantha Cole outside the airport entrance. He hitches a ride in her network’s helicopter and heads for Stuart’s plane which is taxiing for takeoff. He manages to jump to the wing and finds himself in hand-to-hand combat with Major Grant. After a brief struggle, Grant is sucked through one of the plane’s engines and killed. Stuart takes up the fight and kicks McClane off the wing. As he falls, McClane opens the fuel dump on the engine. As he watches the plane take off he uses his cigarette lighter to ignite the fuel, but not before saying his catch phrase from the first film, "Yippee-ki-yay, motherfucker." The fuel burns right up to the plane, causing it to explode. It also provides a landing light for the other planes. McClane finds Holly among the passengers.
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