A Christmas performance classic Die hard Will make a great book, a real page turner with intensity, interesting characters, high stakes, and more. except it already Yes Books, especially 1979 Roderick Thorp Novel Nothing lasts forever. The book itself is a sequel to Thorp’s earlier novel, Detectivethat has been adjusted into Die hard prequel of sorts starring Frank Sinatra. His hope to have Sinatra reprise the role in the sequel did not work out (Sinatra was first rejected in the sequel, but there is no denying that “part of it, New York, New York, motherf ** ker” will have. Scary). After many years, the novel will be adapted Die hard. Some changes have been made to make Thorp’s novel a story Bruce Willis Vehicles that we know and love, but how are the two different?
The characters in ‘Die Hard’ seem very different
To recap, the film stars Willis as New York City police detective John McClane (Willis), who flies to Los Angeles unannounced to visit his estranged wife at Nakatomi Plaza at her company’s Christmas party. While McClane is in the bathroom, a terrorist group, led by Hans Gruber (Alan Rickman), destroy the skyscraper and take the guests hostage at the Christmas party. They are after the untraceable holder’s bond in the vault of the building, cold worth $640 million. McClane, who was able to escape unnoticed (no shoes), is ready to be the proverbial fly in the ointment with their plan, taking out the bad guys one at a time. Single-handedly, McClane stops Gruber and his captors, rescues the hostages, and walks away with his wife Holly (Bonnie Bedelia) in the end, seems reconciled.
The biggest difference at bat is the collection of characters. John McClane is an eleven-year veteran of the NYPD, a man in his 30s who has a tendency to drink and disobey orders from his superiors. In that book, the protagonist is Joe Leland, a World War II vet and retired police officer who helped create safety protocols for the FAA. What the couple has in common is trouble with the authorities and taking off their shoes at the worst possible time. Holly Gennaro is an independent woman of honor, who has worked her way up the corporate ladder at Nakatomi Corporation. In the novel, Leland is invited by his daughter Stephanie, the vice president of international sales, to a Christmas party. Stephanie Gennaro is no saint, sleeping with her boss, using cocaine, and directly involved in illegal activities with the Chilean government.
Alan Rickman’s Hans Gruber shares little with his novel counterpart: Anton “Little Tony the Red” Gruber. Anton is the son of an SS officer, a loving socialite who is a politically motivated terrorist, unlike Hans who, in the end, is more than a thief. He is the darker and more calculating villain in the book, instructing his men to hit the fluorescent lights on the stairs as he realizes Leland is barefoot, before Hans figures it out. (This causes a fall in the film, as the fluorescent glass will shatter your feet, but the safety glass in buildings like Nakatomi Plaza is designed to break into pieces without sharp edges. Anton Keeps Company is more diverse, with four female terrorists on his team and none on Hans.
‘Die Hard’ motive differs from ‘nothing lasts forever’
A deeper difference between Hans and Anton lies in their motivations. Hans is after Bond in the lobby of Nakatomi Plaza, admitting to Nakatomi CEO Joe Takagi that they are not terrorists at all, just before shooting him in cold blood. Anton, on the other hand, is a true blue terrorist, aiming to expose the illegal activities of the Klaxon oil company to the Junta regime in Chile. His plan was to break into the company’s safe, find incriminating documents and nine million dollars in illegal profits, and throw it all out the window to the public below. A loftier goal, but the same move to kill Klaxon’s CEO, a Texan named Rivers. Both McClane and Leland, after killing the first terrorist they encounter, send the corpse down the elevator with a message. In McClane’s case, he wrote “Now I have a machine gun Ho-Ho-Ho” as a warning. “Now we have machine guns,” Leland wrote, “not only serving the same purpose as a warning, but doubling as a way to deceive terrorists about the approach of their opponents.”
There are moments in the movie that are not in the novel, or are very different. In the book, the whole story is seen through Leland’s eyes, but the movie cuts out from what the character is doing all the time. The FBI is not in the book at all, while in the movie, the FBI agent provides humor through overconfidence. The media is not really in the book much, especially the character Richard Thornburg played by William AthertonThe actor who is inseparable from the iconic performance, is only in the movie and gives the biggest laugh when Holly pops him at the end (and in die hard 2 having received his comeuppance in that film as well). There are no laughs to be had in the novel, especially when it comes to the end. The end of the movie is a typical happy Hollywood action ending, with the bad guys dead and the good guys alive. The ending of the novel is very different, starting with Gruber’s death. Hans falls to his death alone after McClane manages to wrestle Holly out of his grasp. Anton falls to his death but takes Stephanie down with him.
Deputy Chief of Police Dwayne T. Robinson, played by Paul Gleason In the movie, was killed in the book when Officer Powell (Reginald VelJohnson) pulls him in front of Leland for cover before shooting Karl (Alexander Gudonov). Unfortunately, it means that Leland himself does not survive the event, which makes the novel a tragic, but typical 1970s ending for the genre. Other cosmetic differences between the two make the novel and film different enough that they can stand on their own, and while a proper adaptation of the novel to film would make for an interesting comparison, Hollywood hasn’t gotten there (yet).