This movie is dumb, and full of explosions. This is not a bad thing, by the way.
|Liam Hemsworth as Lt. Jake Morrison, aka not as good as Will Smith|
|Jeff Goldblum as David Levinson|
|Bill Pullman as The Best Retired Movie President Ever|
|Maika Monroe as Patricia Whitmore|
|Jessie Usher as Dylan Dubrow-Hiller, who’s not quite Will Smith either|
|William Fitcher as Gen. Joshua Adams|
|Angelababy as the Token Chinese Star so this movie makes big bucks in China|
|Deobia Oparei as Dikembe Umbutu|
|Robert Loggia as Gen. Grey|
I’ve waited twenty years for a sequel to Independence Day. It’s one of my favourite movies, not because it’s got a great storyline, or some great quest for philosophical enlightenment. It was a glorious demonstration of computer graphics, special effects ingenuity and ‘Murica Is Awesome, and came from a time when aliens blowing up national monuments was actually cool. When you watch something like that as a kid, you tend to remember it for a long time.
So, we all know the story of Independence Day, big bad tentacled aliens invade Earth for the resources. Then a Jew and an Apple Powerbook save the day, and we manage to co-opt the aliens’ advanced weapons and technologies for ourselves. Twenty years later, everything is back to normal, as the world rebuilds itself after the initial devastating attacks.
Enter the aliens. Again. This time, the mothership actually lands on Earth and starts to drill towards the Earth’s core. After some scientific mumbo-jumbo, and a lot of spectacular special effects that literally defy gravity (and the laws of physics), Earth’s old heroes are back again to save the day. And by that, I mean President Whitmore and David Levinson. Oh, and they also get some help from a third alien race of ascended artificial intelligences that look like a really big version of Eve from Wall-E.
So, really, this sequel had to do something more spectacular than the original. I mean, they couldn’t really just send another one of the original mothership things to Earth. That would be pointless. Instead, the 3,000 mile, clocked harvester ship is the shit, physics bending bad-movie-science aside. Impressive as that was, the storyline left a lot of places where you’d have to ask “why”?
After initial disaster movie scenes of worldwide destruction and what not, the humans decide to counterattack. Which makes sense. What doesn’t make sense is that they only have enough fighters for ONE attack, which launches out of Area 51. I mean, really? Surely there was more than one hangar full of advanced fighters stationed all over the world, and you could easily have organised a more international response? These fighters can fly to the frickin’ Moon and back by themselves.
There’s also the huge host of characters, which I understand because it’s been twenty years, and everyone’s old or new. Much like a certain movie reboot, there were lots of parts of this movie that are exactly the same as the original. For instance, that one bit involving the brave sacrifice of a pilot flying into the middle of an alien space ship with some ordinance, David’s dad being the comic relief, etcetera. It feels like they did a rebootquel.
But, and this is quite a big but, it doesn’t feel as organic as the original. I mean, the first one was a tight, well crafted action blockbuster that was a B-grade movie with A-grade ingredients. This one, for some reason felt too clinical and certainly tried a little too hard to hand off to a sequel. Which leaves Resurgence feeling like an A-grade movie with B-grade outcomes. In the grand scheme of things though, we’d all take a B in something like calculus, so I wouldn’t complain too much.
Independence Day: Resurgence, that blockbuster that took twenty years to come to fruition is a movie that does well enough to set up a sequel. Whether the sequel will get made is another question, but that’s out of our hands completely. It’s a sequel that has its predecessor’s spirit, but not its heart, and it suffers from bad editing and a surplus of characters that could probably have been cut Cersei Lannister style. Still, if you’re after big bad alien invasion, explosions and CGI that’ll melt your brain, this is pretty much your only option.
I wish this was better than the original. But it wasn’t. It’s still good, but after all that hype, you kinda feel a bit disappointed.
Watch this if you…
Are into dumb movies with explosions. Explosions everywhere. So…basically Michael Bay.
Skip this if you…
Are Will Smith.