Jukka Nurmi

23rd Dec 2020

Die Hard (1988)

Question: If the guy at the reception desk knew that the only ones left in the building were on the 30th floor, why did he tell John to use the screen?

Answer: Most large companies, particularly hi-tech or multinational ones, require visitors to check-in, especially afterhours. By having John search for Holly's name, it can be verified that he actually knows someone who works there, that there is an actual employee with that name, and otherwise assess whether John is a legitimate visitor. This scene's real purpose, however, is for plot exposition. John learns from the monitor that Holly now goes by her maiden name (Gennero) rather than her married surname. We see John's annoyed reaction to learning this, which sets up a later confrontation between him and Holly over their troubled marriage.

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Answer: The party was on the 30th floor and John was asking for a specific employee, his wife. He had no idea where she was exactly.

Answer: Any answer is speculation; but a simple explanation is he may have forgotten the only people left were there for the Xmas party until John mentioned the 30th floor. The guard also seems fairly proud of their new high-tech touchscreen system so he might have just had John use it to show off how nice the building is.


Answer: Most likely he just wanted to showcase a nifty (by 80s standards) piece of technology to a visitor.

Jukka Nurmi

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