HALFWAY through this outlandish fifth instalment of the Die Hard franchise, a Russian henchman scolds John McClane (Bruce Willis) for recklessness in the face of death.
"So arrogant," sneers the East European underling, "it's not 1986, you know!" No it's not, despite the Cold War stereotypes that perpetuate the shambolic script. This is a high-speed tour down Memory McClane that exploits our nostalgia for one of modern cinema's most tenacious action heroes.
It's been 25 years since Willis's wise-cracking cop debuted in the original Die Hard.
For this latest assignment, McClane's estranged son Jack (Jai Courtney) joins the old man on a romp through Moscow.
There's no art, creativity or invention in this overblown sequel. Just outrageous set pieces which defy the laws of physics, deafening explosions that shake the cinema and Willis delivering his "Yippee-ki-yay" catchphrase with a weariness we share by the end credits.
The perfunctory plot dispatches McClane to the gridlocked Russian capital where Jack is arrested for murder.
No sooner has he arrived than terrorists blow up the courthouse with the intention of kidnapping high-profile prisoner Yuri Komarov (Sebastian Koch), who holds vital information that could bring down corrupt Russian politician Viktor Chagarin (Sergei Kolesnikov).
McClane sees his son leading Komarov to safety with gun-toting assassins in pursuit. He gives chase in the first of several action sequences, and learns that Jack is a CIA hotshot on a top-secret mission.