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die hard is a xmas movie | by maryann johanson

The Hitcher (review)

To pick up strangers, or not to pick up strangers. That is the question, and there is no right answer here, for whether one is cruel bastard who leaves a broken-down motorist out in the rain or one is a kindly godfearing family man who does that needful motorist a good deed, one will be targeted equally for gruesome bodily torture and psychological terrorizing by Sean Bean (Flightplan), in one of the greatest examples of poor choice of work on the part of any actor, ever. What starts off as mind-blowingly idiotic, with dumb characters doing stupid things — like informing the bad guy “I’ve got a gun!” instead of just using the damn thing — rapidly spirals into wanton sadism. When Bean’s psycho hitchhiker throws a car at our teenage-wastelander “heroes” (Sophia Bush: Supercross: The Movie, and Zachary Knighton), the film is irreversibly lost, and it’s only half over at that point. After that, this aggressively nauseating flick delights in carefully and specifically manipulating the plot, cheating at every step of the way, into a situation in which vigilantism is the only response. This isn’t a commentary on the breakdown of law and order, of civil society itself — it’s a symptom of it.

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MPAA: rated R for strong bloody violence, terror and language

viewed at a semipublic screening with an audience of critics and ordinary moviegoers

official site | IMDb
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