GOOD KING WILLISLAS

Count us firmly in the camp that believes any film set during Christmastime is, by default, a Christmas movie. It's all fine and dandy if a movie with a yule-time theme happens to be about goodwill toward men and sharing in holiday cheer, but there's no rule against celebrating illicit sex and marital insecurities, either. (Eyes Wide Shut, anyone? C'mon, Kubrick did nothing without a reason and there's a Christmas tree in nearly every scene!) One of the greatest of the non-Christmas Christmas films is 1988's Die Hard, in which NYPD cop Bruce Willis arrives in L.A. to spend the holidays with his estranged family and ends up single-handedly swatting off Alan Rickman and his terrorist buddies in a major hostage crisis. Who doesn't like explosions and Uzi fire with their eggnog?! Of course, the ideal double feature for this mayhem would include the equally legendary '80s Christmas-set action flick Lethal Weapon; barring that, Sunday's back-to-back Bruce fest at the Egyptian with Die Hard and Die Hard 2 (the latter, though not quite up to par with the original, is not bad and features an excellent baddie turn from William Sadler) will do. Yippie-ki-yay and ho-ho-ho.
Sun., Dec. 20, 7:30 p.m., 2009


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