Die Hard is the 1988 action film starring Bruce Willis as John McClane, an NYPD detective who arrives in Los Angeles on Christmas Eve to visit his estranged wife Holly (Bonnie Bedelia) during an office party at the business tower where she is a vice president. When terrorists led by Hans Gruber (Alan Rickman) seize the tower and hold Holly and 30 others hostage, McClane then finds himself the only one who can thwart the terrorists' plans. The film, which was directed by John McTiernan, spawned four sequels and helped establish Willis as an action movie star. In addition, the basic plot of a single person taking on terrorists while trapped in a confined space would serve as the basis for a great number of action films in the following decades. In 2017, it was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry.
The following weapons were used in the film Die Hard:
The Beretta 92F features prominently in the film as the sidearm of Detective John McClane (Bruce Willis). At one point, Hans Gruber (Alan Rickman) is seen holding the Beretta. Karl (Alexander Godunov) gets ahold of it during a fight near the end of the film as well. Another Beretta can also be seen being carried by one of the SWAT officers involved in the ill-fated raid on the Nakatomi Building. It is worth noting that the main character in the book "Nothing Lasts Forever", on which the movie is based, carries a Browning HiPower rather than the Beretta 92F.
Heckler & Koch P7M13
Hans Gruber (Alan Rickman) carries a hard chromed Heckler & Koch P7M13 as his main weapon, notably using it to threaten Joseph Takagi (James Shigeta) and Harry Ellis (Hart Bochner), and then brandishing it at the climax of the film, holding McClane's wife Holly (Bonnie Bedelia) at gunpoint. When he first brings out the weapon while threatening Takagi, he is shown removing a matching suppressor from the barrel, thus indicating it's not a P7M13SD because there is no threaded barrel to use a suppressor. (The threads to attach the suppressor were actually inside the barrel of the gun, as there were no live rounds fired out of it.) According to the script, Hans was supposed to carry a Walther (likely a PPK, but it's not specifically identified) It is assumed that the P7M13 was used in place of this, as it bears resemblance to a Walther PPK, and both firearms are German, like Hans himself.
During the takeover of the Nakatomi Building, Karl (Alexander Godunov) can be seen using a suppressed Walther PPK to kill the security guards at the front desk and by the elevators. He later has it without the silencer when he hears McClane leave following Takagi's death and goes to investigate.
Smith & Wesson Model 15
At the end of the film, McClane finally gets to meet Sergeant Al Powell (Reginald VelJohnson) in person and is introducing him to his wife when Powell has to pull his Smith & Wesson Model 15. He is seen firing 5 rounds. The Model 15 was the standard sidearm of the LAPD from 1971 to 1988.
Heckler & Koch HK94 (chopped and converted)
Another frequently-seen weapon in the film is the Heckler & Koch HK94s chopped and converted to look like MP5A3s. The Heckler & Koch MP5 was often considered the Rolls Royce of submachine guns when it was first widely introduced to the market in the late 1970s/early 1980s, and are used primarily by Gruber's men (and occasionally Gruber himself). McClane manages to commandeer one from one of the terrorists, Tony Vreski (Andreas Wisniewski), informing his comrades of this by leaving a note on Tony's corpse saying "Now I have a machine gun. Ho Ho Ho.". At one point, McClane extends the stock hoping to use it as an anchor so he can descend down the ventilation shaft via the sling, though the sling doesn't support his weight for long, soon coming undone and sending him falling into the shaft before he catches himself on the opening of an air vent. He then procures another MP5 from another slain terrorist, using it until he runs out of ammunition during a gun battle with Karl. He then procures yet another MP5 from a terrorist on the roof, firing it into the air to scare the hostages brought up. He discards it when it runs out of ammunition before the final battle with Hans. By the way, in the book "Nothing Lasts Forever", on which the movie is based, the main character first uses a Thompson Submachine Gun and later an AK47. Fun fact: In the book, the note reads "Now we have a machine gun", in order to confuse the terrorists.
MGC M-16 Model Gun Corp Replica Rifle
When the SWAT team makes their ill-fated raid on the Nakatomi building, they can be seen carrying MGC M-16 Model Gun Corp Replica Rifles. Some M16's can be seen with 20-round magazines, while others appear to have 30-round magazines.
One of the more unusual weapons (for the time) in the film, the Steyr AUG assault rifle is used by Karl (Alexander Godunov) throughout the movie. It was likely chosen as the writers wanted to contrast the terrorists' exotic European weapons with the more traditional American firearms used by the LAPD. Being bullpup in design, the AUG features a decent barrel length in a compact design, and is also fitted with an integrated scope. The AUG is fired repeatedly by Karl during his personal mission to get revenge against McClane after he killed the first terrorist, who happened to be Karl's brother. In a memorable scene at the end of the film, a revived Karl emerges from a body bag with his AUG in hand for one last-ditched attempt to kill McClane (which begs the question why he was wrapped up inside a body bag alongside his gun).
Steyr SSG 69
Mistaking McClane for a terrorist shooting hostages, FBI Special Agent Johnson (Robert Davi) is seen taking aim with what appears to be a Steyr SSG 69 fitted with an AN/PVS-3 Starlight night-vision scope.
Another weapon in the terrorists' arsenal, an M60E3 Machine Gun is the weapon used by Alexander to turn Sgt. Al Powell (Reginald VelJohnson)'s police car into "swiss cheese" after McClane throws Marco out of a window and onto the hood of his car. It is also used to shoot out spotlights during the attempted SWAT raid on the Nakatomi building.
The gunner on the Huey helicopter carrying FBI Special Agents Johnson and Johnson is seen opening fire on McClane with a full-sized M60 machine gun.
"Hockey Puck" Flash Bang
During the takeover of the Nakatomi building, Karl uses flashbang grenades shaped like hockey pucks to disorient the guard by the elevators. The flashbang is also used by Karl during the gun battle that ensues after a confrontation between McClane and Gruber.
Custom Rocket Launcher
When the building is surrounded by the police, Hans has his men set up a custom rocket launcher. The launcher is fitted onto a tripod mount that is seen being bolted down before firing. It's fired twice to take out a SWAT APC.
The screenplay was based on the Roderick Thorp novel Nothing Lasts Forever and the character of John McClane is an evolution of the character Joe Leland, a role portrayed by Frank Sinatra in the 1968 film The Detective.