Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Independence Day: Resurgence

For the past twenty years Planet Earth has rebuilt the world ravaged by an alien invasion, and with the use of the advanced alien technology Planet Earth is a strong, safer place. However, twenty years on from the first invasion, a ship the size of the Atlantic Ocean arrives on Earth's doorstep looking for revenge over the planet that destroyed the ship twenty years previously.

Independence Day is arguably as important as Jaws in influencing the shape of the modern blockbuster as Independence Day arguably kicked off the big dumb summer blockbuster phase which included the likes of Michael Bay's Armageddon, a film that's equally as enjoyable as Independence Day. What we get with Independence Day: Resurgence (or regurgitation as some have called it) it pretty much the same as the first Independence Day (hence the regurgitation).

For those who love Independence Day (of which there are many, myself included) this isn't really problem. The film has the lame, corny dialogue, the overabundance of characters (including a John Oliver lookalike) and spectacular special effects which includes a great scene of the Burj Khalifa crashing into Central London because the alien invaders always seem to like getting the landmarks. The film is a little slower in getting going as we are introduced to new characters and well as some returning favourites. The new characters try their best but Jessie Usher’s Dylan Hiller feels like a poor man’s Will Smith and Liam Hemsworth’s Jake Morrison doesn’t fare much better. Acting heavy weight Charlotte Gainsbourg gets a raw deal as it seemed she was badly dubbed. The returning characters, Jeff Goldblum and Bill Pullman, fare much better.

However, once the giant ship arrives, the sheer stupidly enjoyable spectacle begins and the nonsense commences. It is this point the film becomes laugh a minute as I began to embrace the stupidity of the film and found sprinklings of humour in amongst all the carnage. Importantly, it keeps the first film’s sense of fun intact and does a decent job at managing the build-up before the alien ship attacks (though the film first did do this better). The film also manages to keep the pace consistent throughout its relatively short two hour run time even though story wise the film does seem to feel like it had five different writers all throwing their ideas on the page.

There are of course many issues with the film, there are too many characters (the film is an hour old and we are still being introduced to new characters) and there are various needless subplots and relationships. The rivalry between Jake Morrison and Dylan Dubrow-Hiller didn’t actually build up to anything worthwhile and was almost entirely pointless, in fact it probably would have been better to remove Jake’s friend and have Captain Hiller as his closest friend.

Independence Day Resurgence is big dumb, fun with a million characters all sprouting utter nonsense from start to finish. I wanted a stupid film and I got a stupid film. 


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