The new DVD release “Olympus Has Fallen” can’t originally be expected to compete up to the 1988 original Die Hard in that storied action franchise, it was obviously as shooting’ shows what could have been with the recent, flaccid fifth “Die Hard” film.
In this we will see Gerard Butler rather than Bruce Willis not marsh an even swamp as action film pedigrees go. But except that, director Antoine Fuqua’s White House-set “Olympus” out die-hards “A Good Day to Die Hard” at every turn.
This all is because, while “Die Hard” appeared to have lost its way in its past few installments each of which arrives as a lesser film than its predecessor Fuqua and company clearly recognize what made that 1988 original one of the greatest action films of all time. What’s more, they capitalize on that knowledge.
Olympus Has Fallen” lacks in originality, but any how it makes up for in other areas.
The beginners will see it as; it sets the whole thing in Washington, D.C., as a group of North Korean terrorists overrun the White House and hold the president and key members of his Cabinet hostage.
As phantasmagoric an idea as it is, it makes for unexpectedly powerful imagery, as it is witnessed the supposedly invincible heart of American politics fall under extended assault. Fuqua (“Training Day”) recognizes the emotional potential there, and he plays off of it effectively.
But it’s also a pleasingly unchanging thrill ride, the distracting jaunt that never forgets its real mission: to entertain audiences. And maybe to remind the “Die Hard” people how it’s done.