Skip to main content

Independence Day: Resurgence Review - Will It Live On? Will It Survive? Do We Celebrate Our Independence Day?

It's been 20 years since Bill Pullman's character in Independence Day picked up a microphone and passionately told the pilots in waiting that 'we will not quietly into the night, we will not vanish without a fight etc etc, you get the idea.  But it's hard to think it was 1996 when the aliens first came to Earth and took out some of our favourite landmarks.

Independence Day: Resurgence is set, conveniently 20 years after ID4 and since 1996 the people of Earth have set aside their differences, pulled together and thanks to alien technology integration enjoyed a higher quality of life.  As a result of this new technology they've also boosted the Earth defenses and prepared for another invasion.  This time, naively the human race think they're ready.  As you can guess, they're not.

As you've probably gathered by now the aliens return bigger, much much bigger.  In fact we first see the mother ship ripping through the moon, taking out the defenses set up on our nearest neighbour with so much ease we may as well have not bothered.  Prior to the aliens turning up a mysterious sphere appears and hovers over our moon base.  With no communication, the authorities of the world decide to take it out.  After the events of '96, the human race have hot twitchy trigger fingers and shoot first and ask questions later is, it seems the best course of action.

Back to the main mother ship that is now heading to Earth and this thing is big.  It's 3000 miles across and even has it's own gravity.  The ship enters our atmosphere and of course all kinds of chaos begins.  Buildings, cars, people and pretty much everything else is sucked upwards as the gravity of the ship takes over.  Major landmarks are destroyed such as London Bridge and as Jeff Goldblum tells us "they like to get the landmarks.'  What follows is destruction, running, destruction, action and have I mentioned the destruction?

The movie is two hours of guilty pleasure, which is no surprise as the director is Roland Emmerich.  He is well known for providing these 'I like this but I'm not sure why' kind of movies.  It has a bigger budget than it's 1996 counterpart so the special effects along with improvements in CGI ensure the battle scenes and aliens are bigger than before.  Independence Day: Resurgence still has a b-movie feel to it which I'm pleased with.  I was worried after watching the trailers that the whole franchise would take itself too seriously.  It doesn't.  The cheesy feel still oozes from the screen and cast are having so much fun with it, especially the stand out performance of the movie, Brent Spiner.

Jeff Goldblum returns as the scientist and Judd Hirsch his comic relief Jewish dad, Charlotte Gainsbourg is the savvy French doctor, but Brent Spiner who returns as the wacky Brakish Okun truly steals each scene he is in.  He wakes from a 20 year coma just before the aliens arrive and
immediately gets to work trying to figure out the mysterious orb that they picked up from the moon.  No wasting time getting dressed but strolling around in a hospital robe, his butt showing and long dangling white hair, you can't help but laugh at Spiner's character.

The cast isn't small in Independence Day: Resurgence and often the movie does frantically cut to scenes trying to fit in all the characters.  There was obvious effort to fit in a few Chinese characters to please the Chinese audience who have recently embraced Hollywood and become an important part of the overall global box-office takings.

We have the predictable hot-shot hero role performed adequately by Liam Hemsworth.  Hemsworth is Jake Morrison, renegade pilot in The Earth Space Defense Force, a special defense program full of good looking Top Gun extras skilled at dog-fighting and wielding advanced alien weaponry mastered since the last attack.

Jake Morrison is (reluctantly) joined by Dylan Dubrow-Hillier (Jessie Usher), the very serious son of decorated war veteran Steven Hillier who was of course played by Will Smith and noticeably absent from the movie.  A large painting of Steven Hillier is the best we're going to get in this movie.  By the way the back story of how and why Steven Hillier is missing from the movie is quickly mentioned in the movie but you can buy graphic novels that tell the story in more detail.

Apart from trying to fit in all these characters and others I haven't mentioned including Bill Pullman who reprises his role as the president all be it a retired one the pace of the movie is perfect and as you can imagine extremely fast paced.  It rarely gives you time to catch your breath with set pieces building on the moon, Area-51, the mother ship, out at sea and the climax in the Nevada desert.  It's not a perfect movie, there are a lot of plot holes but the one thing you can't do is take the movie seriously.  It's an alien invasion movie and at times you would think you've just paid good money to watch an Asylum Studios movie that someone managed to get more than the half million dollars they normally spend on a film.  But that's okay, I know what I was expecting.  I didn't want a movie with a heavy story, I wanted aliens and human  going at it and I wasn't disappointed.  I've read some reviews saying there is no plot and it's a by the numbers disaster movie.  That's what I paid for.

The soundtrack is adequate.  The absence of David Arnold who scored the original is noticeable but Harald Kloser and Thomas Wander do a job worthy of the film.  The familiar signature tune from the original is dropped in from time to time especially at the beginning when we hear the famous president speech being played.  Other pieces seem to sound a little synthetic at times sounding like they've come from a soundblaster soundcard rather than from an orchestra.

I left the cinema smiling.  I'm a sucker for alien invasion movies and Independence Day: Resurgence did not disappoint.  As I've mentioned I was worried it was going to take itself seriously and it didn't.  It looked great, was action packed and I had a blast.  I wanted more and thankfully we are left with a story that paved the way for at least one more. That's what I want from an Independence Day movie.  It was a serious close encounter...but not too serious.

Independence Day: Resurgence
Director: Roland Emmerich
Writers: Nicolas Wright (screenplay), James A. Woods (screenplay)

Stars: Liam Hemsworth, Jeff Goldblum, Bill Pullman


Rob Wainfur

The Bearded Trio - The Site For Steven Spielberg, George Lucas and John Williams




Post a Comment

I would love to hear your thoughts. Please leave a comment, don't be shy.

Popular posts from this blog

Did Paul Freeman Accidentally Eat A Fly In Raiders of the Lost Ark?

The Famous Indiana Jones Fly In Belloq's Mouth Scene.  Did It Really Happen? I've always wondered if Paul Freeman unintentionally consumed a fly in this scene in  Raiders of the Lost Ark ?  It's the scene where Indiana Jones shouts down to Bellosh...I mean Belloq and threatens to blow up the ark.  Did a fly go in his mouth? I remember watching this scene back in the early eighties and my ten year old mind thought he definitely had a snack while filming.  I recall talking about 'flygate' in my school playground at the time and the general consensus with my friends was that Freeman definitely had a sneaky snack. Paul Freeman talks about the famous 'fly' scene in an interview with  and settled 'flygate:' This is a bit of a dicey question so don’t get too upset. (Laughs) A movie’s always got bloopers in it, some have a lot, and some only have three or four. And the most remarkable blooper was right before the opening of th

Star Wars VII Movie Poster - Every End Is A New Beginning

Star Wars VII Movie Poster Just saw this Star Wars VII movie poster on Kyle Newman's Facebook fee d.  The poster is by  Lyndon Berresford and Paul Bateman.  I am loving this.  Who do you think the two characters are?  Lando and Leia?  Han and Leia's children? Have you seen other Star Wars VII movie posters?  Let me know. Rob Wainfur @welshslider

Explaining That "Weird" Cut In Poltergeist. Read The Missing Scene

Why Is There A Strange Cut In The 1982 Horror Classic, Poltergeist? If you're a fan of the 1982 Horror classic, Poltergeist then you will be very familiar with that "weird" cut in the movie.  It's 32 minutes and 47 seconds in to the movie and the scene is where Diane is explaining the strange phenomenon that is happening in the kitchen.  First, she shows to Steve a chair scraping across the floor all on its own then she does the same with Carol Anne.  Steve leans up against the kitchen wall and is completely shocked at what just happened.  It's at this point Diane starts to explain the sensation of being pulled and then...A very abrupt cut.  One moment we are listening to Diane and suddenly it cuts to Diane and Steve at their next door neighbours door.  Why the sudden cut?  It's on the VHS, DVD, Blu-Ray and even the streaming versions.  Why does this awful and weird cut exist in the movie, Poltergeist?  Watch the clip below to see the cut: Well, the ans