Independence Day: Resurgence
by Bobby Blakey
When the original Independence Day hit theaters in 1996 it was a surprise hit that took audiences to new directions in science fiction. Sure the movie was full of cheese, but that was part of the charm along with numerous moments that became iconic to this day. There was always talk of a sequel, but seemed like it would never happen, but now 20 years later it is here with Independence Day: Resurgence. Some of the original cast return including Jeff Goldblum, Bill Pullman, Brent Spiner, Judd Hirsch, Vivica A. Fox, Robert Loggia, and John Storey along with a younger cast to attempt to take it to the next stage, but does it live up to the fun of the original or will it be an invasion not worth stopping?
Independence Day: Resurgence follows the nations of Earth that have collaborated on an immense defense program to protect the planet using recovered alien technology from the attack in 1996, but nothing can prepare us for the aliens' advanced and unprecedented force. Only the ingenuity of a few brave men and women can bring our world back from the brink of extinction. While it is exciting to revisit this world it doesn’t wholly offer up near as much to get excited about. Sure there is plenty of alien action and fun, but it is filled with characters you just won’t care about. The new members of the cast offer up generic to bad performances giving nothing to the film other than some painful exchanges. They brought a great idea to further the storyline of this franchise but fail’s to officially deliver. Liam Hemsworth does an ok job bringing the exact same character that he does in every film and plants it here right next to Jessie T. Usher who takes on the role of Will Smith and Vivica Fox’s grown up son. He does very little here other than try to be the Smith of the story but does nothing that fully stands out. For some strange reason they brought in Maika Monroe to take the place of the President’s daughter that was originally played by Mae Whitman in the original. Had she been one of those actresses that was not all that prominent anymore you could understand the recast, but Whitman has established a great career and would have been so much better reprising this character. Monroe offers up nothing to the part and is so unbelievable in every scene, especially the action that it is comical.
While most of the new cast are a waste the original members here offer up all the fun even when the script and dialogue is cheese. Goldblum, Spiner, Pullman, and Hirsch all step right back into their roles and look like they are having a bit of fun and at least seem to be trying. With all these performance and miscasts it is a good thing that most are wanting to see this film for the alien butt kicking action and there is plenty of it. The effects are as great as ever and you get to see way more of the aliens than the previous film. They no doubt really stepped up the action with the aliens themselves offering up more variety of them and taking it to the next level. Anytime they were offering up the action it was a fun movie to watch despite none of the action scenes delivering anything we really haven’t see before at this point. Part of the issue with it waiting so long to deliver the follow up is that we are so jaded to seeing the world destroyed and aliens at this point that there wasn’t anything that really stands out this time around.
In the end this is a fun follow up albeit not as fun and great as the first film, but one that can still be a lot of fun if you just watch it for the mindless popcorn fun it is. If you were one of those that hated the original then this one will not do much to change that opinion, but if you were a hardcore fan of it then you will still likely find the fun here. They ended the film with a clear set up for another installment so it will be interesting to see if it can step up its box office game to warrant the next chapter or if it will end up playing out only in our mind.
This release not only includes the film, but also numerous special features including deleted scenes, commentaries, gag reel, trailers, and featurettes taking you further behind the invasion. Witness their return with Independence Day: Resurgence available now Digital HD, Blu-ray, 4K Ultra HD and DVD from 20th Centruy Fox Home Entertainment.