There are action movies that people enjoy and then there are action movies that people will argue over because they’re adamant that they do belong to a certain holiday without question. Die Hard is without a doubt a Christmas movie since it takes place during Christmas and that’s that. The saying that “It’s not Christmas until Hans Gruber falls from the Nakatomi tower.” or some other variation is something that a lot of people will stand by in a firm manner since it’s been a pretty big argument over the years. But getting a little deeper into the movie it’s fair to say that a few other movies have come up with similarities that have been noticed by a lot of people. While Die Hard should have probably stopped at the one movie, plenty of people would likely disagree since they’ve enjoyed at least one or two of the sequels. But the similarities that other movies share tend to be anything from being trapped in tall buildings to taking on what feels like long odds.
Here are a few movies that are similar to Die Hard in some way.
5. The Rock
The overwhelming odds that Goodspeed and Mason, played by Nicolas Cage and the late Sean Connery respectively, faced were definitely a similarity since they went in as part of a rescue team to save a group of hostages taken captive by a war hero that had grown tired of his nation disrespecting its fallen soldiers. The fact that an FBI agent that dealt with chemical warfare and an aging convict that was once one of the deadliest British operatives could take on a group of highly-trained military figures might have been absolutely impossible if not for the fact that they managed to use the terrain and the element of surprise.
4. Predator 2
This is kind of like Die Hard in reverse since a guy falling off of a building kind of kicks things off since it’s when Danny Glover’s character first notices the alien hunter, no matter that he thinks it must be a trick of the heat. When the hunt begins in earnest and takes his friends and coworkers though, Glover’s character decides to go on a little hunt of his own. Of course, that gets reversed once again as he soon finds himself on the predator’s ship, where he has to battle the creature for the final time before realizing that the hunter didn’t make his way to earth alone. More than that, he finds out that the hunters have been coming to earth for quite a while.
3. Poltergeist III
The idea of being trapped in a tall building is a little terrifying, especially since when things start to happen that no one has any control over it can become even worse. Tack on the idea that there are intruders in the building that are intent on getting what they want and it becomes a nightmare that many people would be begging to wake up from. The fact that the intruders are malevolent ghosts that are intent upon a single girl and are perfectly comfortable with tormenting everyone they can get their hands on along the way make things terrifying. But as it happens with each of these movies, the poltergeists are eventually vanquished or convinced to leave.
The idea of an area that was once a known and benevolent space, ideally, becoming an unknown and dangerous location is something that one can’t help but think is horrifying due to the fact that it’s unexpected, unprecedented at that moment, and not something that needed to happen. Alien was an even scarier movie since there was only one xenomorph on the ship. Just imagine if the rest of the crew had been infected, save for Ash, and she’d have been left with a ship crawling with killer aliens that she had no history with. Even in Aliens, she had to toughen up a bit in order to do her own thing.
1. Air Force One
Terrorists, enclosed spaces, and a single person doing most of the fighting against the terrorists. There’s enough similarity there for most people to see, and while the protagonist is a little different, a president instead of a cop, the result is pretty much the same with one-liners and action on a level that probably shouldn’t have worked but was still convincing enough for a lot of moviegoers. Not only that, but the symbolism that was used in the movie was likely what kept a lot of people watching it since the vaunted American ‘can-do’ attitude and the unwillingness to back down to terror was probably something that kept a few chests puffed up.
Die Hard was a one-of-a-kind movie to a lot of people, but it’s easy to see how certain elements have been used again and again.