Die Hard (1988)

From Television and Film Character Encyclopedia

A New York cop visiting Los Angeles, comes in conflict with a group of international thieves posing as terrorists.


Genre

Action

Christmas

Characters/Groups

John McClane - Bruce Willis

Holly Gennero McClane - Bonnie Bedelia

Sgt. Al Powell - Reginald VelJohnson

Dwayne T. Robinson - Paul Gleason

Argyle - De'Voreaux White

Thornburg - William Atherton

Ellis - Hart Bochner

Takagi - James Shigeta

Terrorists

Hans Gruber - Alan Rickman

Karl - Alexander Godunov

Franco - Bruno Doyon

Tony - Andreas Wisniewski

Theo - Clarence Gilyard, Jr.

Alexander - Joey Plewa

Marco - Lorenzo Caccialanza

Kristoff - Gerard Bonn

Eddie - Dennis Hayden

Uli - Al Leong

Heinrich - Gary Roberts

Fritz - Hans Buhringer

James - Wilhelm von Homburg


Big Johnson - Robert Davi

Little Johnson - Grand L. Bush

City Engineer - Bill Marcus

City Worker - Rick Ducommun

Capt. Mitchell - Matt Landers

Rivers - Carmine Zozzora

Ginny - Dustyn Taylor

Hasseldorf - George Christy

Young Cop - Anthony Peck

Man & Woman - Cheryl Baker and Richard Parker

Harvey Johnson - David Ursin

Gail Wallens - Mary Ellen Trainor

Supervisor - Diana James

Dispatcher - Shelley Pogoda

Hostages - Selma Archerd, Scot Bennett, Rebecca Broussard, Kate Finlayson, Shanna Higgins and Kym Malin

Lucy McClane - Taylor Fry

John Jr. - Noah Land

Paulina - Betty Carvalho

Convenience Store Clerk - Kip Waldo

Station Manager - Mark Goldstein

Thornburg's Assistant - Tracy Reiner

Guards - Rick Cicetti and Fred Lerner

Cameramen - Bob Jennings and Bruce P. Schultz

Soundman - David Katz

Businessman - Robert Lesser

Stewardess - Stella Hall

Girl at Airport - Terri Lynn Doss

Boy at Airport - Jon E. Greene

Kissing Man - P. Randall Bowers

Girl in Window - Michele Laybourn

Character thumbnails with links to profiles

Detailed Synopsis

As their plane lands, Businessman notices John McClane tightly gripping the seat armrest. The Businessman gives John a hint on how to relax after the flight and tells him to remove his shoes and socks and to walk around making fists with his toes. He passes by a Stewardess, who smiles at him. At Nakatomi Plaza, Takagi makes an announcement at the Christmas party congratulating his workers on a successful year. Ellis walks up to Holly Gennero McClane and asks her out to dinner, but she tells him no and also tells Ginny to stop working and enjoy the party. She calls home and Lucy McClane answers the phone. Holly tells Lucy to put Paulina on the phone and then asks Paulina if John called. Holly gets off the phone and puts the family photo with John in it, face down on the desk. As John is walking through the airport he sees a Couple at Airport run and hug each other. He sees Argyle holding a sign with J. McClane and Argyle tells him, he is his limo driver. As they drive to Nakatomi Plaza, Argyle asks questions about John and his background and John admits he thought Holly would fail and have to come back to New York City.

Argyle drops off John and tells him he is going to park in the parking garage until John finds out where he is staying. John goes up to one of the Guards and tells him he is there to see Holly, and when the Guard shows him the computer directory to use, John notices Holly is using her maiden name. John is then directed to the 30th floor. John gets out of the elevator and as he is walking through the party, he is kissed by Kissing Man. He walks up to Takagi and Takagi guesses he is looking for Holly. Takagi walks John to Holly's office and they find Ellis snorting cocaine on her desk. Holly walks in and hugs John. Holly asks him if he has a place to stay and invites him to stay at her house and he asks how Lucy and John Jr. are doing. A Man & Woman burst into Holly's office and apologize and leave. John and Holly start to argue and Ginny goes into Holly's office and tells her that Takagi is looking for her and wants her to make a speech. A moving truck drives down into the parking garage of the building, while a car pulls up to the front of the building. Karl and Theo get out of the car and Karl shoots both of the Guards and Theo starts using the building's computer.

Theo shuts down all the escalators and closes all the exits to the building. Eddie puts on the uniform of one of the dead guards while Tony goes to cut the telephone lines. John does the trick that the Businessman told him about and it works. John calls Argyle, but the call is dropped when Tony finishes cutting the phone lines. Hans Gruber goes to the 30th floor along with Franco, Alexander, Marco, Uli, Fritz and James. They then shoot in the air to get the attention of the party goers. John hears the gunshots and panic of the party goers and sees Holly being taken away. He manages to escape to the stairwell and sees Theo and Kristoff moving large trunks on the 31st floor. John continues on to one of the incomplete floors and sees Girl in Window talking on the phone. Hans demands to know which among the people is Takagi. Takagi steps forward and is taken away by Hans. John continues up the stairs and sees Uli, Marco and Heinrich transporting guided missiles. Takagi is brought to his office and Hans tells him, he wants the system key code so he can steal the $640,000,000 in bonds in the building vault. Takagi refuses to give the code and Hans shoots him in the head.

John, who was watching from the other room, runs away, but Karl and Hans hear him. Heinrich, Marco and Uli set explosives underneath the roof of the building. John pulls the fire alarm and Eddie calls the fire department and cancels the alarm. Tony goes to the floor where the fire alarm was pulled and he and John get into a fight. They fall down the stairs and Tony breaks his neck. John goes through Tony's bag and takes his walkie talkie, lighter, weapon and magazines. He rides the elevator down while hiding on the roof and listens as Hans finds the body of Tony and lists the names of other members of the group. John goes to the roof and calls for help on the walkie talkie. Dispatcher tells her Supervisor, the caller is talking about the same building as the false fire alarm. The Supervisor advises John that he is using an emergency channel. Karl, Franco and Fritz take the elevator to the roof. They start shooting at John and the Supervisor tells the Dispatcher to send a unit to Nakatomi Plaza. Sgt. Al Powell brings an armful of Twinkies to the cash register and tells Convenience Store Clerk they are for his pregnant wife. Dispatch radios Powell and tells him to investigate Nakitomi Plaza. John manages to barely get away and hides in the air ducts. Powell gets out of his vehicle and Eddie lets him inside the building. John grabs a chair and uses it to break the window in Takagi's office, alerting James who radios Heinrich, who sends Marco after John. Heinrich and Marco go into Takagi's office and John shoots and kills both of them. Powell briefly walks through the entrance of the building before leaving. As Powell is leaving, John throws Marco's body onto the hood of his patrol vehicle and starts shooting at it.

While he is in the editing room, Thornburg overhears Powell's call for help over the police scanner. John uses the walkie talkie to taunt Hans and goes through Heinrich's bag and then takes it. Thornburg argues with his Station Manager to give him a news truck to investigate what is going down at Nakatomi Plaza. Harvey Johnson overhears them arguing and tells Thornburg to give them a break. Soundman starts the countdown for the news to start and Harvey and Gail Wallens start the news. Karl tells Hans that John has the detonators. Powell radios John and John tells him about the terrorists and how many and the location of the hostages. Young Cop administers aid to Powell as he advises John to wait for help. Dwayne T. Robinson arrives on scene and he starts to argue with Powell about whose side John is on. Holly is taken in front of Hans and she requests that Ginny be allowed to lay on a couch and people allowed to go the restroom. Hans asks Holly her name and she uses her maiden name. The channel on the TV in the office Hans is in breaks for a report by Thornburg who describes what is going on at Nakatomi Plaza. Argyle also watches the report while sitting in the limo.

Capt. Mitchell and his SWAT team get ready to enter the building and Hans tells the others to get ready. Rivers and his team advance on the building and the terrorists shoot out the police spot lights. Robinson tells Mitchell to pull Rivers and his team back, but Mitchell insists they are almost in the building and sends an armored personnel carrier, (APC) towards the building. Uli and Eddie shoot and wound Rivers and his team. Alexander and James fire the missile launcher at the APC, stopping it in its tracks. After Hans tells Alexander to shoot the APC one more, John takes a block of C4 and puts it on a chair and drops it down the elevator chute. The explosion blows out most of the lower floors, killing Alexander and James. Thornburg's Assistant looks on in shock at the explosion while he exclaims in excitement and asks if his Cameraman got the explosion on tape. Robinson takes the radio from Powell and tells John they don't want his help. Ellis gets the attention of Fritz and he is brought before Hans. Ellis tells Hans he can help him by bringing him John. Ellis tells Hans details about John including his full name and that he is a cop and Thornburg, who is listening in, tells Thornburg's Assistant to gather information on John. Ellis tells John he told Hans that they were old friends and then tells him to surrender and to hand over the detonators or Hans will kill him. John yells that Ellis isn't his friend and Hans shoots Ellis for no longer being useful.

Hans radios the police and gives a list of demands to Robinson including the release of numerous international revolutionaries. Hans asks for an update on the locks from Theo and then tells Karl to hunt down John. Gail interviews Hasseldorf about what the hostages might be going through. Young Cop tells Robinson that the FBI are there and Little Johnson introduces himself and Big Johnson to Robinson. As Hans is checking on the roof explosives, he is found by John and acts like he is a hostage. Hans notices John doesn't have any shoes on and radios Karl and Fritz where he is at. John figures out there must be more explosives and the elevator doors open and Karl, Fritz and Franco get out. John kills Fritz and then Franco and Hans tells Karl to shoot the glass panes in the room. John runs to an elevator, but in the process is forced to walk barefoot over glass and Hans recovers the detonators. Thornburg's Assistant returns with information on John, including his home address in L.A. Big Johnson argues with a City Engineer and a City Worker about shutting the local power off. City Worker eventually does it when Big Johnson threatens to have him fired. The final lock disengages and Theo and Kristoff search the vault. John radios Powell and asks him to tell Holly he should have been more supportive of her and that he was sorry. Thornburg goes to Holly's house and at first threatens to call the INS on Paulina and then tells her it may be the last time Lucy and John Jr. have to speak with John and Holly.

John goes to the roof and finds the explosives and is then attacked by Karl. Just as Hans is about to have the Hostages brought to the roof, Thornburg's interview with Lucy goes live and he figures out Holly is married to John. Uli takes the Hostages up towards the roof. As they fly their attack helicopter towards the building, Little Johnson asks Big Johnson what percentage of the hostages will survive and Big Jonson tells him 75-80 percent. Hans, Theo and Eddie gather the bonds from the vault and John ties a chain around Karl's neck and then runs towards the roof. John shoots and kills Uli and Ginny tells John, Hans took Holly to the vault. John tells the Hostages to get off the roof and then ties a fire house around his waist and jumps off the roof as Hans remotely detonates the explosives. The explosion blows the helicopter out of the sky, killing Big and Small Johnson. Argyle sees Theo drive an ambulance out of the back of the moving truck and rams it with the limo. He then runs up and punches Theo unconscious. As Kristoff is running off with a bag of bonds, John hits him with the butt stock of his weapon, knocking him unconscious. He walks into the hallway and Hans pulls Holly in front of him and puts a gun to her head. Hans orders John to put down his gun and as Hans is about to shoot him, John starts laughing and pulls a gun he taped to his back and shoots Hans and then Eddie in the forehead. Hans falls out a window, but grabs Holly by her wrist and watch. John unlocks the watch and Hans falls to his death. John and Holly leave the building and John meets Powell face to face for the first time and they hug and John introduces Powell to Holly. Robinson walks up to John and demands a debriefing and Karl walks out of the building holding a rifle. As he is about to shoot John, Powell shoots Karl dead. Argyle rams the limo out of the buildings security gates. As John and Holly are walking towards the limo, Thornburg asks them what their feelings are, and Holly punches him in the face. John and Holly kiss and Argyle drives them home.