Die Hard

Die Hard (1988)

65 corrected entries

(27 votes)

Corrected entry: When the FBI agent is telling the worker from the power company to shut of the power, the worker says that the power will be out for several city blocks. When the helicopter is taking the agents to the Nakatomi building, all of the lights are on in all of the surrounding buildings.

Correction: The Nakatomi building is in the middle of a business park. All of the buildings surrounding it have could have an emergency power supply, including Nakatomi building which you can see has been switched on (external and internal lights).

XIII

Corrected entry: Any glass in modern office buildings is tempered glass. This kind of glass breaks into tiny, rounded pieces with semi-smooth edges. If you were careful you could easily walk on it without injury. John should not have had splinters of glass in his feet.

Correction: Not all the glass on the floor is from the windows. Some is from the computer screens and copiers that Karl and Hans smash up along with the windows. Besides this, McClane did not exactly have the time to be careful, since he was trying to get to a place of safety while making sure there were no criminals still around who would shoot him.

Twotall

Corrected entry: Willis loads a clip into the grip and then pulls the slide back to supposedly chamber a round before handing the weapon to Rickman. The problem: When you pull the slide back on the Beretta when the clip is empty, the slide locks in the open position unless another switch is tripped. Willis did not do so and Rickman's character, a sophisticated terrorist, would clearly have realised the weapon was not loaded. (01:30:15)

Correction: I know that if the clip is empty the slide does lock back, but by moving your thumb slightly you can release the slide, making it look as though the weapon is ready to shoot.

Corrected entry: In the begining of the film when John is in the limo, there's a teddy bear next to him in the back seat that has a red bow around his neck, however, in next scene, the bow is gone, and the next it magically appears.

Correction: We only see the bear in the back seat one time and the red bow is present. More importantly, McClane sits up front, to the surprise of the driver.

tw_stuart

Corrected entry: At one point McClane interrupts Hans on the walkie talkie while Hans has his transmit key down and Hans can hear what McClane is saying. You cannot hear anyone on a walkie talkie while your transmit key is pressed.

Correction: In the film, they are using CB radios, not normal walkie talkies. CB radios do in fact support duplex communication and therefore this mistake is incorrect.

Corrected entry: After killing the first terrorist, John tries on his shoes and finds that they are too small. Why after killing the others does he not try on their shoes as well?

Correction: When he kills the other terrorists he doesn't have time to try on their shoes: when he kills Heinrich and Marco he is trying to get Al's attention; when he kills Karl's two buddies (kneecapping one of them) he is being shot at; when he 'kills' Karl he has to stop the hostages being blown up; when he kills the Chinese guy he is again trying to save the hostages; and after he kills Hans and his buddy at the end there isn't much point.

Corrected entry: There is a scene where Bruce Willis and Alan Rickman meet. Rickman poses as an American employee of Nakatomi who escaped the terrorist siege of the building. Willis hands Rickman a Model 92F Beretta 9mm handgun implying that Rickman might help Willis fight the terrorists. Rickman then turns it on Willis. The problem: The 92F Beretta is the civilian/police model of the current U.S. military and NATO sidearm -- the M9 Beretta. There is a bright red visible indicator on the right side of the slide that reveals whether the weapon is loaded or not. Any European terrorist of Rickman's sort would be well familiar with that fact and would not have been fooled into thinking the weapon was loaded when it was not.

Correction: Not so - a US Army civilian policeman got in touch and said, with his gun in front of him, that there's no indicator, red or otherwise, on either side of his Berretta 92F. Some models may have such an indicator, but not all. Also, when empty, the slide does lock back, but by moving the thumb of your right just slightly you can release the slide thereby leaving the weapon in an apparently ready to shoot mode.

Corrected entry: McClane uses the festive holiday tape that was used to wrap gifts to tape his pistol to his upper back before the big finale. Considering how much blood, grime and sweat McClane had on him, that tape would never have stuck to his skin, especially considering that it is only wrapping tape, not some kind of industrial tape like duct tape or anything stronger.

Correction: It would take no time at all to wipe off his back where he's taping the gun.

Correction: I'd add that the position of the gun on his back would be very awkward for a person to place there themselves. It's almost in the middle slightly below the shoulderblades...an almost impossible place to reach unless you're double jointed. And he is NOT Martin Riggs or Riddick.

Almost impossible, in your opinion, doesn't count as a mistake. Being double jointed wouldn't make a difference. Also, neither Martin Riggs or Riddick are double jointed, they can dislocate their shoulders.

Corrected entry: The whole premise of the movie is to rob a very large vault of securities in the form of bearer bonds. The vault rightly takes hours to breach and the last safety feature requires a cut in power. This is patently impossible to accomplish in the short time they had. Firstly, that super-sophisticated vault would have a state-of-art power back-up system that would take hours itself to be disabled. It is likely that the disabling of THAT system would lock down the vault and seal it for days or weeks. Secondly, shutting down the main power would almost certainly lock down the vault. I actually install the back-up systems and know that any odd power surges or especially power losses alert the security systems to prepare a lock down.

Correction: Just because some vaults are set up in this way, it doesn't follow that they all are. Gruber researched his target in enormous detail prior to committing the robbery - it's clear from what happens in the film that none of these features are in place. Maybe, for improved security, they should have been, but the fact that they weren't in no way qualifies as a movie mistake.

Tailkinker Premium member

Corrected entry: When the terrorist breaks into the candy rack, he reaches his hand into a box marked Nestle and later he is eating a Hershey bar. Then in the next shot he is eating a different type of candy bar.

Correction: He takes a Nestle Crunch bar from the box. The first time he's shown after that he's eating that bar (torn blue wrapper with "Nestle CRU" printed on it. A short time passes and we see a very brief shot of him holding a Mars bar wrapper. Might be a mistake, but he's right by the candy stall and there's enough time for him to have grabbed a second bar.

Correction: He's actually also eating a Mars Bar (just Google "Die Hard Mars Bar" sans quotation marks and you'll see images and video of the scene) but he could potentially have eaten both candy bars. No correction needed.

Correction: He was eating a Nestle Crunch bar the whole time.

Corrected entry: When John is on the roof trying to radio for help he connects with a woman from an emergency help line, why does the woman not believe him when he tells her about the huge emergency? Not in a million years would a person from the emergency help line not believe you when you call them with an emergency, even if it sounded like a child making a prank call ordering a fire-truck to his friend's house and they could hear the child giggling while he's saying it, they would still have to send someone out. John is screaming at the woman for help and she still doesn't believe him.

dan coakley..

Correction: As the other dispatcher stated at the beginning of the call, it came from the same building as the "false fire alarm." It got called off by the terrorists so the dispatchers believe it is a prank call. As far as they're concerned it's already been confirmed that there's no problem there.

lartaker1975

There is another factor not being considered here: if memory serves, John is not on "911" but on the police band. Half of her stubbornness is telling this crazy civilian to get off this restricted channel.

I agree with the original poster. Prank or not, there was automatic weapon fire that caused her ears to ring, you would think that she would do something other than call for a 'black and white to do a drive-by'.

Correction: There HAVE been cases of emergency service operators not believing callers. There was one infamous case in NYC where a woman who had fallen ill died because the operator didn't believe her young son who called. And another when a kid called 911 from the school bus because the driver smelled of alcohol, was speeding, and blowing through several red lights while cursing the kids, who were begging her to stop. During the entire call, the operator seemed extremely skeptical of the report, and when the police finally caught up with the bus and arrested the driver, the operator was surprised and told the officer on the scene that she had "really hoped the kid was lying." So, while unprofessional, it happens. The wouldn't blow off the call the entirely, but they might assign it a lower priority. The most egregious cases have resulted in disciplinary action, including firing, and lawsuits.

I have personally called 911 and the operator didn't believe me and kept mocking me and then told me to get on my way, so I'm not even sure services were dispatched.

Corrected entry: Hans and most of his men arrive on the 30th floor party and begin firing. Upon hearing the shots, McClane grabs his gun and is able to sneak into the nearest stairwell and climb up a few flights of stairs (he checks and passes the 31st floor, where a few more of Hans' men are spotted wheeling supplies) before finally arriving at the 32nd floor to begin seeking help. For essentially the remainder of the movie, McClane remains "above the danger zone", so to speak. However, it is fair to theorize that when McClane initially reached the stairwell undetected, he could have also descended to any number of other floors to then seek help. Even if many of the lower floors may not have been open (locked, not finished, etc.), McClane could have simply descended as far down as the main lobby (and out the front doors). Remember, Hans and his men were not aware of a straggler at first, and in theory all McClane would have had to do is descend the stairs to the main floor and get past the lone terrorist acting as the "security guard" at the desk.

Correction: To what point though? That would work if McClane is trying to escape. But he's not. He's trying to stop the terrorist and talking to the police on the radio. His wife is in the building. He's not wanting to get out, he's wanting to save her and stop the terrorist.

Quantom X Premium member

That is correct, but you were thinking too far ahead. For the first few moments, John is simply trying to summon help (which is evidenced by him pulling the fire alarm and hoping that proper authorities arrive), and take care of it from there. He only started doing that after he found that he could not get past Hans and his men - because they were already aware of his existence. In one frame of thinking, it may have been easier to get the help needed for both his wife and everybody else if he just could escape the building all together, which he may have had a good chance of doing if he went down the stairs toward the first floor.

So the character made, in your opinion, a poor choice. This does not constitute a mistake.

It would have been a pretty pointless movie though wouldn't it?

Corrected entry: German does not seem to be any of the terrorists mother tongue - they all have a terrible accent and sometimes what they are saying does not make any sense. E.g. when the terrorists hunt Bruce Willis on the roof and he escapes into the elevator shaft, one of the terrorists uses his CB-radio and says something like: "Wir sind im Heizenhaus, unter dem Dach". The word Heizenhaus does not exist. If you change it into "Heizhaus" it would translate into "boiler room" - a room that is not normally located right under the roof, is it?

Correction: When is it established that the terrorists are all German? We assume their leader Hans is, but that doesn't mean all of his men are. (We know some are American, for example.) The person speaking has poor spoken German. Not a mistake.

Corrected entry: The C-4 explosive would need an electrical charge to cause the explosion. The chair and computer monitor or fall wouldn't cause the C-4 to detonate.

Correction: The Computer CRT on the chair has a vacuum tube and "cathode-ray" projection system that provides the television picture. These are known to explode when ruptured. I was also in the military in the 1976-1983. (USAF Security Police) Just for grins and giggles, a buddy of mine got hold of some detonators. We took them and an old CRT out on the range and tied them together. We shot the CRT, it exploded and detonated all of the blasting caps.

Correction: McClane pushes in detonators/ blasting caps to the C4 before lashing it on the computer monitor and office chair. Detonators have 'primary-explosives' within them that are much more sensitive than 'secondary' explosives 'like C4, which are less sensitive and rely on a 'shock wave' from a primary explosive to initiate or set it off. Primary explosives are susceptible to detonation by physical shock also. When the monitor and chair crashed onto the lift below, the weight of the monitor acted onto the detonator much like a hammer of a firearm will onto the firing cap of a bullet, setting it off and providing the shock impulse to detonate the main charge, that is the C4.

I would agree with this and also add that the CRT monitor attached to the chair was previously plugged in. This means that the tube in the monitor and the capacitors would still hold a charge. The amount of blasting caps put into the C4, combined with the electrical charge still contained in the now-smashed monitor, would give a chance of at least one of the blasting caps detonating.

No. The blasting caps won't initiate from being dropped like that. Even though it's a primary explosive, it's not that sensitive. If it were, it would be incredibly difficult to transport, but yet it's not. Regardless, the detonators aren't that sensitive, neither is the C4. The explosion would NOT happen.

Corrected entry: When Argyle rams his limo into Theo, the limo and ambulance are pinned so the front of the limo is well in front of the ambulance door. However, when Argyle gets out and punches Theo through the window, he's standing where the limo should be, and not standing on top of it.

Bishop73

Correction: When Argyle rams the ambulance, the limo's front left corner hits the front left corner of the van at about a 40 degree angle. The angle of the two vehicles leaves a wedge-shaped gap. Argyle over the limo's bumper, but you only see his body as he goes over, not the car.

There is no gap big enough for Argyle to stand as he is based on the previous scene.

Bishop73

Just watched this scene, the limo gets stuck on the ambulance's front tire, and covers at most half of the driver side door. While Argyle does seem to have more room than he should, he does stand at the rear of the door where he would be able to do so without standing on the limo.

Except we see him jump (over the limo) and lands a bit before where the mirror and the small triangle glass part of the window is, which is the front part of the door and sits over the wheel well where the limo is.

Bishop73

Corrected entry: When Bruce Willis is fighting the first terrorist, they both crash into a stairwell door and the door breaks off it's hinges and falls on the stairs. The floor was under construction but the door is obviously attached. I find it hard to believe that two people crashing into a office building door of that type would be enough force to break it off the hinges.

Correction: This is an action movie, people crashing into a door and breaking it off its hinges is perfectly in keeping with the genre.

tw_stuart

Corrected entry: A computer printout states that Takagi was born in 1937 and that he served on the aircraft carrier Akagi in 1940. It is impossible that a three-year old would be assigned to the Imperial Japanese Navy.

dominicmgm

Correction: The image on the screen isn't a picture of James Shigeta (the actor who portrays Takagi). It's the records for the founder of the Nakatomi Corporation. Takagi was only the president and CEO, not the founder.

Bishop73

Correction: The record shown (while the password for the vault is being hacked) isn't for Takagi - the picture is of a different man, presumably his grandfather. Gruber says Takagi was born in 1937, the family emigrated to California in 1939, and were interned 1942-43. Presumably his grandfather stayed in Japan and fought in the battles listed onscreen, on the carrier Akagi.

Corrected entry: McClane sends the elevator down to the 30th floor with Tony's body in it and gets on top of the elevator. The terrorists are there, standing about, discussing the body and that they must now tell Karl that his brother is dead. Why would they then press the button for the 32nd floor (the top floor) without getting in? That happens only so that Bruce Willis can get to the roof for the next scene.

Correction: I've seen the scene and not sure why you think the terrorist didn't get in the elevator. They were told by Hans to hide the body, which explains why they went up.

Bishop73

Corrected entry: At the end of the movie, Richard Thornberg is trying to interview John and Holly. Holly socks him in his nose and he is grabbing it in pain. The next shot, as John and Holly enter the limo, he is talking to a camera normally as if nothing happened, then the next shot, he is suddenly holding his nose again.

Correction: If you look closely he is holding his hands up while somebody checks his nose.

Corrected entry: When Hans is asking for Mr Takagi his shirt is white, yet when they go in the lift Hans' shirt is light blue. (00:26:30)

Correction: If you look closely, you can see that the shirt is light blue all the time. The lighting just makes it look white occasionally.

Die Hard mistake picture

Continuity mistake: When the terrorists launch the rocket at the RV, they break the same window of the building twice. (01:11:55)

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Trivia: During filming, Alan Rickman was found proficient at mimicking American accents; the scene in which McClane and Hans Gruber meet was then inserted.

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Question: Why didn't Hans Gruber simply place 5 hostages in a room and threaten to blow their brains out if John McClane doesn't hand himself in? John McClane is the good guy with a conscience and Hans Gruber is the ruthless killer that kills 2 people in a heartbeat, John would have been forced to hand himself in or be responsible for their deaths. Even if Hans didn't want to kill anyone, he could have pretended to shoot people one by one. John wouldn't know any better.

Answer: We don't know what John would have done in that circumstance. Obviously Hans was planning to kill everyone with the explosives anyway at the end. Perhaps John would have suspected that. Also, doing that would invite more police incursions.

Greg Dwyer

The fact that we don't know how John McClane would have acted doesn't remove the fact that it would most likely have been a good way to coax him out. Also, depending on when Hans Gruber would have decided do implement this strategy, John probably wouldn't have known about the explosives on the roof as he only finds out about them at the 3rd act break. As for the "more police incursions" part, I couldn't disagree more; Hans already killed two hostages - one on speaker with the police -, all the cops in LA seem to be there already, and don't forget that the involvement of the FBI is part of their plan anyway. This is definitely the one major plot hole of this otherwise perfect film.

It would have been, but plenty of movie plots don't pan out the "perfect" way without it being a plot hole. Killing Ellis is a reasonable first step, it doesn't work, and then the events of the plot pick up pace - Gruber goes to check the detonators, as that's a priority. He's hoping/assuming they can get through the rest of their plan by isolating McClane, or at least prevent him causing more chaos. They want the power shut off - they don't want to cause such massive carnage that the building is stormed before then. They need to get helicopters, blow the roof, and escape as planned. Hans doesn't want to derail things any more than they already have been.

Jon Sandys Premium member

Seems to me like they have all their bases covered; the police isn't even able to get in with a tank as he blows them up so I don't think the police "storming the building" is even a possibility in the reality of the film. Also, after blowing up that tank, that's two hostages and a bunch of cops dead so I would say the situation is pretty derailed. Everything is going as planned for Hans and his team, except for McClane, so he should be in damage control mode and this is an obvious solution. He doesn't even have to change his plans, just tell McClane he's gonna kill one hostage every 10 minutes until he shows up unarmed and tell one of his henchmen guarding the hostages to do it while they go along with the plan and maybe even try to find McClane at the same time. I think this is something Hans should have at least considered, but the screenwriters just didn't think about it/didn't want to address because they couldn't think of a good reason for him not to do it.

There are no cops dead, Hans says "Just wound them" and despite the awesome explosion, the APC isn't actually penetrated or destroyed. But Hans needed this to turn into a standoff, a show of force would prevent a SWAT raid from expediting the deadline, he needed to get all of the hostages up on the roof to make his getaway downstairs, and executing a bunch of them would bring suspicion onto how cooperative he is (His plan to blow up the roof relies heavily on the police sending in choppers) they cooperate with him, which they won't do if they think Hans is a crazed lunatic who's only interested in more and more carnage, if he wounds the cops and only shows he can defend himself, and that he was being reasonable. The cops would play ball, and they would believe he's willing to spare the hostages lives, plus he always planned on taking one hostage as a contingency, if they thought they were gonna be killed they'd become a liability. Patton Oswalt talks of a real plothole though lol.

John McClane would know they'd kill him as soon as he shows up, as soon as he heard "We'll have to tell Karl that his brother is dead" he knew that all bets were off, he lost his chance to end it civil, if they had no personal connection to the first terrorist John kills then maybe putting 5 people into a room and doing an Air Force One on them would work, but not when John knows he'll be body number 6. Al says it best "If he gave himself up they'd both be dead" with Ellis execution, John watched them take control of the hostages, watched them execute the Takagi, and when the first Terrorist thinks he's found John he shoots first after saying "I promise I won't hurt you" and then taking his bag and realizing how well financed and equipped, these guys weren't domestic terrorists, they used serious money, serious contacts, and serious planning to get themselves into this building on this night. He knew the only way to play ball with them was fists and elbows.

Hans thought Ellis was a good friend of John's and John still didn't give up when he was going to shoot him. If John wouldn't save his friend, why would he care about others. Plus Hans told Karl earlier he could stall the police but not if they heard gun shots. The police would have absolutely stormed the building if he started killing the hostages.

Zorz

Answer: Hans Gruber needed the last vault lock to open by cutting off the electricity, he didn't wanna escalate it further so that the FBI would start getting more aggressive, he needed them to play ball so he could make it seem like he's just a terrorist who martyr's himself and the hostages, and by the time they figured out him and his men aren't among the remains, they'll already have left in the basement with the ambulance. Shooting 5 people would have escalated it to the point that the FBI wouldn't play ball with him.

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