Hollywood has been obsessed with nostalgia for YEARS, it’s rare to see a movie that isn’t a sequel or reboot in theaters nowadays. So it’s inevitable that the highest-grossing film of 1996, Independence Day would have its own sequel. The familiar faces of Jeff Goldblum, Bill Pullman, and Judd Hirsch make their epic return in Independence Day: Resurgence, but don’t expect Will Smith, who was busy filming Suicide Squad at the time. Honestly, he was better off being Deadshot than Captain Steve Hiller, because even Suicide Squad was more entertaining than this cash-grab.
How to Stream or Download Independence Day: Resurgence
You can stream it or you can download the film from a number of digital stores. Click on the Download button at the end of the review and make your choice.
The Movie Review
After a terrible alien invasion nearly wipes off the Earth and every living thing, the planet has become a peaceful futuristic Utopia. The earthlings have taken the aliens’ technology to build a base on the moon. And just as their anniversary is near, President Whitmore has begun drawing strange symbols. Now, the Earth must brace itself for another wave of extraterrestrial invasions.
While the nations’ experts and David Levinson, the director of the Earth Space Defense program, work together to scan the skies for signs of hostile activity, an invisible and considerably larger spaceship enters our solar system, intent on extracting our planet’s resources. When all hope seems to be lost, it’s up to the old heroes and the new generation of Earth’s guardians to save humanity.
Director Roland Emmerich remains the director of this sci-fi disaster movie, and he’s got plenty of experience with the genre, having done films such as Godzilla, The Day After Tomorrow, and 2012. But despite that, I’ve come to the realization that he was never that great at them, they’re just grand in scale.
The same thing has been done in Resurgence, Emmerich and Vanderbilt (and three other writers) reuses the old plot and makes their ships 3,000 miles bigger, with much bigger destructions on famous landmarks such as Dubai’s Burj Khalifa, Kuala Lumpur’s Petronas Towers, and Singapore’s Esplanade. Yet, they’re so grand that you couldn’t give a damn about anything, it’s the same emotional value you’d get blowing off a house of cards.
One thing I hate the most about disaster movies is that they make little effort to write their characters, the majority of them are just replicas of the original characters in the form of daughters and sons – you’ve got Patricia Whitmore as Thomas Whitmore’s daughter, Dylan Hiller as Steven Hiller’s stepson, and to replace his stepdad is the boring Jake Morrison (Liam Hemsworth). The only characters I could enjoy were the old ones.
Jeff Goldblum is always fun to see as the hyperactive nerd, and you can never get enough of him saying “Oh my god.” The guy could read off a phone book and still make it sound like the bible. Other than that, the sequel doesn’t offer a promising story, nor does it make any sense.
My biggest issue with the plot is how the writers failed to explain what the old characters were up to during those 20 years. One example of this is how Captain Steven Hiller, the biggest guy in the first movie who survives the first alien invasion ends up dying during a random flight test. I can’t imagine the disappointment of older fans who came to see the movie expecting a Will Smith tribute.
On the other hand, the sequel is a good movie from a visual and technical standpoint. I did find the Harvester Queen bus chase scene intense, the CGI is gorgeous, and the camera work felt like a rollercoaster ride. Thomas Wander and Harold Kloser’s musical score is also beautiful, it did most of the work giving the movie a sense of drama if the writing failed to do so. Overall, the destructions looked believable and scary enough.
The Bottom Line
In conclusion, Independence Day: Resurgence is a huge disaster. It’s everything you would expect: bigger ships, a young and handsome lead, and hell breaking loose. That’s pretty much the movie in a nutshell. While it’s still as thrilling as the first Independence Day, there are so many plot holes and things that don’t make sense that it pulls you away from the experience.