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Independence Day: Resurgence (2016)

A review by Nalini Haynes

Twenty years after the first Independence Day movie, humanity expects the aliens to return and they’re ready. Or so they think.

In the beginning there is some good character work, setting up Jake (Liam Hemsworth) and his fiancé Patricia Whitmore (Maika Monroe) to be a likeable couple in whom the audience invests. Jake has a sidekick whose entire purpose is to be a Chekov-type (from the Star Trek reboot) but who isn’t half as cute in personality or looks. He’s also a bit of a bumbler while being so far up his own ass that he nearly causes a catastrophic accident, allowing Jake to break rules, break his ship’s engine and save the day.

Oh, look, foreshadowing: our good-looking hero will break rules and disobey orders to get the job done. Maybe.

After the first twenty minutes or so, Resurgence seems to switch writers and mostly forget about character work except for the loveable Julius Levinson (Judd Hirsch) who steals the movie while rescuing a bunch of kids.

Independence Day: Resurgence wheels out a lot of the original characters for nostalgia’s sake, has lots of splodeys and some absolutely stupid plot twists — like the queen alien chasing a school bus for no apparent reason — and is a generally enjoyable yet mediocre movie. However, to enjoy Resurgence you need to be nostalgic for the original and enjoy mindless splodey movies. If you want a movie carried by character or plot, this is not the movie you’re looking for.

I watched Resurgence with low expectations and it wasn’t quite as bad as I expected. IMDB gave Resurgence 5.4 out of 10; IMDB tends to be so generous that any movie that gets below 7 is deeply suspect. Rotten Tomatoes critics gave it 31% and the audience gave it 32% so viewer beware!

FYI I watched Central Intelligence straight after Independence Day: Resurgence and Resurgence shines in comparison.

Rating: 2 1/2 out of 5 stars
Director: Roland Emmerich
Writers: Nicolas Wright, James A Woods, Dean Devlin, Roland Emmerich, and James Vanderbilt
Stars: Liam Hemsworth, Jeff Goldblum, Bill Pullman

Independence Day: Resurgence

Nalini is an award-winning writer and artist as well as managing editor of Dark Matter Zine.


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