Todd Russell’s review published on Letterboxd:
When Bruce Willis signed on to be an action star in the 80s, some were skeptical. To that point he'd been a star of a hit TV show with Cybil Shepherd. He delivers a more realistic action hero in John McClane, a detective visiting his estranged wife Holly (Bonnie Bedelia) at the under construction Nakatomie tower. There's a party on the 30th floor. He takes the elevator upstairs while a group of shadowy characters enter the building, led by master criminal Hans Gruber (Alan Rickman). The criminals take over the building, lock it down and proceed to the 30th floor, armed and ready to take it over. John McClane escapes and becomes the "fly in the ointment, the monkey in the wrench."
Willis' humor, talking to himself, and catch phrases while he's single-handedly taking down the bad guys is epic. Taking away a half-star for a sketchy death at the end for one of the bad guys, who miraculously "comes back" but otherwise this movie is a ton of fun and entertaining to watch over and over.
There are some really good fleshed-out minor characters like Argyle the limo driver (De'veroux White), the twinkie fanatic policeman, Al Powell (Reginald Veljohnson), the cocaine-sniffing Nakatomie exec trying to put the move on Holly and close a deal with the bad guys, Harry Ellis (Hart Bochner) and more!
The script is excellent, the acting top notch and the action is fast-paced and exciting. One of the best 80s action films and started a franchise which has spawned five films as of 2013, all starring Willis as John McClane. This movie has about everything you could ever want in a great action movie. Haven't seen it? Oh, you're in for a treat! Recommended.