'Die Hard' Is a Christmas Movie, and Here's Why

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and you know what that means: We only have 21 more days to keep arguing about whether Die Hard is a Christmas movie! And on that front, there’s some sad but not unexpected news this morning: Everybody is wrong again.


“Most people say.” This is what’s called the tyranny of the majority, and I for one will not stand for it. If that’s what most people say, then most people are wrong. Dead wrong! Die Hard is a Christmas movie, and I’ll prove it.

Here are six reasons I’m right and these haters are not:

1. John McClane travels cross-country in hopes that the spirit of Christmas will save his family

Some critics I won’t name (cough cough Sonny Bunch cough cough) always insist that the Christmas season has nothing to do with the plot of this classic film. “McClane could’ve flown thousands of miles to see his estranged wife and children on Halloween, or the Fourth of July, or any other holiday. It has nothing to do with why he’s there!” This is, of course, patently ridiculous. McClane is an NYPD detective, so he doesn’t have time to go traipsing from coast to coast just to attend a July 4th barbecue. He’s not going to schlep all the way from NY to LA just to send his kids off trick-or-treating. No, his cross-country trek only makes sense if he makes it at Christmastime. His hopes of reconciliation are inseparable from that one time of year when everybody tries to put aside their differences and spend time together as a family. In that sense, Die Hard isn’t a Christmas movie… it’s the Christmas movie.


2 McClane gives gifts to the good girls and boys, and solemn judgment to the rest

In recent years, Americans have become more familiar with the legend of Krampus, who’s sort of like Santa’s opposite number. In the old folklore, Krampus is a Christmas demon who punishes all the bad little girls and boys. If you’re good all year, Santa gives you presents. If you’re not, Krampus will getcha! In Die Hard, McClane serves both roles. He doles out judgment to the wicked, in this case Hans Gruber and his gang of Eurotrash scumbags, and gives the hostages the most precious gift of all: life.*

3. Sure, Die Hard came out in July, but Miracle on 34th Street premiered in May

A lot of people don’t know that fact, or don’t care because they don’t like facts. So when they start sneering about Die Hard‘s release date, remind them that just because a movie comes out during the summer, that doesn’t disqualify it from being a Christmas movie. If anything, a summertime release just proves that the movie’s Christmas spirit is strong enough to withstand the blazing heat.


Um, remind me… Who says, “Ho ho ho”? Who wears a Santa hat? Is it the Easter Bunny? Is it Uncle Sam? Sorry, Scrooges. Wrong again.

5. “Christmas in Hollis.” Ahem:

It’s Christmastime in Hollis, Queens
Mom’s cookin’ chicken and collard greens
Rice and stuffing, macaroni and cheese
And Santa put gifts under Christmas trees


I dunno, guys, sounds like a Christmas song to me. It’s not a Christmas song just because it’s rap? Okay, racists.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly:

6. His wife’s name is Holly. I rest my case.

Die Hard is a Christmas movie, and if you disagree, you hate America.

Stay tuned until next time, when I prove definitively that this is the best Christmas carol ever:


*Well, except for Ellis. But Ellis did that to himself, the idiot. And John couldn’t save poor Mr. Takagi either. Hey, even Santa Krampus ain’t perfect!


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