Setting the Record Straight Once and for All: Is Die Hard a Christmas Movie

03 . Mar . 2022
Reading Time: 3 minutes

It’s technically not that time of the year again when we’re all divided into team sides—is Die Hard a Christmas film or not—but we’ve decided we’re done arguing over this every holiday. The dispute over this topic has become the topic of many discussions. Some film blogs conclude that it is indeed a film to watch during Christmas, whereas others stand their ground firmly and declare that the holiday is not relevant to the events taking place in the movie.


Most of the debates around Die Hard’s Christmas theme concentrate on its cultural, creative, and commercial themes. The film’s artistic argument is determined by the purpose of those who worked on it. Given that both director John McTiernan and writer Steven De Souza have stated that Die Hard is a Christmas film, the creative case appears to be quite strong. Nevertheless, it’s time this argument is settled for good—we’re betting on to finalize whether or not Die Hard is a holiday flick.

Reasons Why It Is a Christmas Movie

The Events Take Place During the Holidays

Pro-Christmas Die Harders are quick to indicate that the events of the movie actually take place around the holidays during an office Christmas party. And with so many crazy things happening at a Hollywood office party, your biggest concern becomes Hans Gruber crashing the function. But consider this—would any of the occurred events in the Nakatomi Plaza have happened if it hadn’t been Christmas? In order for Hans’ plan to work, his team needed executives present and security to be relaxed, and parties like these aren’t held at offices during other times of the year.

It Features Christmas Songs

Yet another obvious reason, Die Hard’s soundtrack is filled to the brim with Christmas tunes. You’ll hear “Winter Wonderland” in one scene, “Christmas in Hollis” in another; “Let it Snow!” and “Ode to Joy” are also on the movie’s soundtrack and played throughout the flick. With old and new Christmas songs featured, it’s no wonder that Die Hard reminds people of the holidays.

John’s Wife’s Name is Literally an Allusion to Christmas

If the rest of the reasons aren’t strong enough to prove that Die Hard is 100% a Christmas movie, John’s wife will conclusively set the record straight. Unless your name is Santa, there’s not a name that’s as festive as Holly.

There’s Gift Giving Involved

What’s everyone’s favorite thing about the holidays? Sure, we love indulging in Christmas cookies, singing carols, (watching Die Hard?), and decorating gingerbread houses. But one thing we can all agree on is we love receiving gifts. Die Hard manages to sneak in a scene or two where presents are being exchanged—a policeman buying a cake for his pregnant wife at a convenience shop, Holly getting a Rolex watch as a corporate gift. In his final encounter with Hans, John’s rifle is sort of wrapped.

Reasons Why It’s Not a Christmas Movie

The Events Could Technically Happen Any Time of the Year

And now, on to the other side of the debate. Yes, we stated that the events take place in December, the most festive month of the year. However, technically, they could very much take place any time of the year. Hans’ plan could easily accommodate any other corporate celebration, and Die Hard could very well be a Thanksgiving flick or a Fourth of July must-watch.

Christmas Movies Aren’t Fans of Violence

Do tell us, how many Christmas movies have you watched where the characters are kicking, screaming, fighting, scheming, killing? Sure, a holiday rom-com will definitely have a scene, where the girl accidentally breaks the guy’s nose, or the guy punches another person for trying to steal his girlfriend. But, not a single Christmas movie is as violent as Die Hard. Christmas reminds us of presents, gifts, family time, elves, Santa—not guns, rifles, and falling off a building.

Holiday Flicks Aren’t Typically R-Rated

This brings us to the following reason. Christmas is that time of the year when the family gets together and spends quality time, meaning there are a lot of movie marathons involved. Now, what kind of a household with kids allows watching so-called Christmas movies with strong language, violence, and even nudity? We don’t know about you, but we don’t like feeling awkward with cousins and grandparents.

There’s Bloodshed All Over

True, red is the most Christmas-y color during the holidays, but it does not justify the bloodshed shown in Die Hard. Most people do not equate blood red with the joyous holiday season—and if you ask us, we don’t plan on doing so either.