Rating: 5 Stars
Totally found this gem by accident when I saw the author's book about President Obama advertised on Goodreads. I ended up getting both for free via Kindle Unlimited. It is only about 70 pages, but it was a lovely little slice of goodness about the greatest Christmas movie ever. It details, through various people involved in the process, what it took to get this movie made, and showed just how many times it was rejected until it was completely re-written into what we know the movie to be today. Thank goodness that it was re-written at all, because the original premise involved a retired police officer going to his daughter's office Christmas party, and she ends up dying, and it would have been a terrible movie. Instead, things were changed up quite a bit, and we get a great hero in John McClane, and the final result is fucking perfect. Die Hard is such a perfect action movie BECAUSE John McClane is not a typical hero. He's a regular guy who gets put into a situation totally out of his control and he is in way over his head. He survives time and time again not because of convenient happenstance, but because he is constantly trying to be one step ahead of the bad guys, and that is REALLY REALLY hard when the villain you are up against in Hans Grüber. (This is obviously different in the later movies when McClane goes from being the Everyguy Hero to an Action Hero, but I don't really pay attention to those. The original Die Hard is pretty much it for me. I am really good at ignoring sequels.)
I only wish this short could be expanded to a full length book. Perhaps material about actual filming of the movie, things that were easy or difficult, funny anecdotes, and the like. Maaaaybe even an interview with Bruce Willis, that would be kind of fantastic. Such a shame that Alan Rickman has passed away, one of the all-time greatest film villains - Hans Grüber. (Don't come at me with Harry Potter b.s. Hans > Snape. Goodbye.)
Die Hard fans will really like this, but definitely get it from Kindle Unlimited if you can.