The movie world, like any other world of academic curiosity, has its immutable arguments that will probably never be settled. And leave it to director John McTiernan’s classic Die Hard to hold two of the most infamous flashpoints to create heated discussion. So leave it to the House Dems to re-open the doors to one of those big debates pertaining to the legacy of John McClane, as they’ve run a poll to see what Christmas movie is the best. And, as you’ve guessed by now, Die Hard is one of the options!
Taking a small break for some holiday cheer, as well as to practice their crucial virtual voting system, the debate of the House Dems’ favorite Christmas movie was put into practice. A wide field of competitors, made up of old favorites and modern gems, was laid out on the table for all to choose from. And the results, as reported on Twitter by The Wall Street Journal’s Congress Reporter, Natalie Andrews, shook out thusly:
House Democrats voted today on their favorite Christmas movie, as a practice vote before virtual leadership elections, per a person familiar.
Choices: Love Actually, Polar Express, Home Alone, Die Hard, and Miracle on 34th Street
Winner: Miracle on 34th Street.
As you can see above, the question wasn’t whether or not Die Hard was indeed a Christmas movie, or not. Rather, the challenge above specifically implies that the 1988 chronicle of John McClane’s night at the party (pal) is a holiday tale by its inclusion alone. While it didn’t win the vote, a greater victory comes from being included in the running.
Of course, there’s still a grand public debate over if Die Hard, and by extension films like Lethal Weapon, should be considered Christmas movies. Every holiday seems to reopen this discussion, with polls being conducted and sometimes attracting folks like Bruce Willis to cast their own votes. In his case, and in some of the polls, there’s a case to be made for why Die Hard is emphatically not a Christmas movie. With Willis himself in that camp, it’s almost hard to side with the steady public opinion that says it is.
Almost, but not quite, as Die Hard does have some of the trappings of a Christmas story. Redemption, reconnecting with loved ones, a greedy miser set to ruin people’s Christmases just to engage in petty theft. It’s all the sort of stuff we’ve seen in movies like It’s A Wonderful Life and A Christmas Carol, which still leaves that door open as to whether or not Die Hard qualifies as a ho-ho-holly night of carnage, machine gun or not. And as you’ll see with the response that CNN’s Jake Tapper replied with on Twitter, that debate is far from over:
If you want to weigh in on the eternal debate, we’ve got a handy poll for you to take below. However, if you want to actually watch Die Hard again for reference, you can stream the film on HBO Max at the moment. Though, if you’re lucky, you might be able to find some repertory screenings in your local area. So if you feel safe enough to head back to theaters, check your local listings very carefully.