Independence Day: Resurgence

6.2 Overall Score
Story Line: 6/10
Characters : 6/10

Jeff Goldblum | Special Effects

Scattered Plot | Too Many Moments That Tried To Duplicate The Original

Photo Credit: Fox Movies

Photo Credit: Fox Movies

The original Independence Day which was released in 1996, has become a staple in our TNT-laced lives. Bill Pullman’s speech in the airport hangar before the big battle with the aliens acted as our quasi rallying call that we use as our fictional last stand to protect mankind. The iconic sight of the White House being blown to smithereens, despite the obvious upgrades in special effects (and Michael Bay movies) is still ingrained within recent movie history. Keeping that in mind, with the return of director Roland Emmerich, there was a challenge of knocking the dust off to make Resurgence and bring it to an audience who may not be as familiar to the original movie. Independence Day: Resurgence is visually impressive, but may trip up regarding the emotional ties that ran alongside the first movie.

Resurgence introduces a mix of old and new characters – with those new characters, there’s an obvious telegraph that this franchise wants to build to a third movie (who knows, maybe beyond). Sometimes, this is a to a detriment to the sequel. As twenty years passed, the nations of the world have come together to make a utopic-like society with the ESD (Earth Space Defense) using the alien technology that laid waste to so many cities in the previous movie. A noticeable omission is Will Smith’s character Steven Hiller, who gave us so many quotable lines in the original – his presence is hinted at from time to time, but supplanted by a couple of new characters (Jessie Usher’s Dylan Dubrow-Hiller and Liam Hemsworth’s Jake Morrison). Nobody can really replace the original Hiller, but Usher and Hemsworth’s character tries to push pass that with their own storied history that is hinted at in points during the movie.

Some old favorites return as well: Jeff Goldblum’s quirky and heights-fearing David Levinson is as great as ever. Dr. Brakish Okun’s (Brent Spiner) mad scientist-like energy is welcomed within the discovery motifs of Resurgence. Pullman’s Thomas J. Whitmore has not been president in quite some time, but is still considered the leader and strongest patriotic link to the original. His daughter Patricia Whitmore (Maika Monore) serves as the second generation that embodies the leadership and strength of her father. There are a couple of moments in this movie that try to duplicate the feeling of the original hangar speech that fall sort in some respects. When you heard Whitmore’s words, “Today is our Independence Day” as he addressed the fighters, it felt natural and honorable. Within the sequel, it tried to encapsulate that same fire, but just missed the mark.

The movie itself catches itself between a lot of plot and beautiful action sequences. The new alien threat looks as gorgeous as ever, but the reasons behind their return (psychic connections between characters, other alien beings present,) seem to be stuffed into two hours to try to add some substance. The reason that the original worked so well is because of the simple premise complete with the awe-dropping action. Aliens come, they destroy things, and within that, humans find strength in lost and defeat the enemy. Some emotional moments are present here, but with so much time passed between movies, it may have weakened that bond.

The Independence Day universe has carved an interstellar path for itself with a third act that will go beyond the battles of Earth. Resurgence is a tale of two movies: in one aspect, this is a fun, whimsical action movie that gives eye candy. There’s also a movie that tries too hard to recapture the natural aspects of it’s predecessor while trying to introduce new plot elements that you hope that can be figured out in future movies.

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Author: Murjani Rawls View all posts by
Journalist, Self-published author of five books, podcast host, and photographer since 2014, Murjani Rawls has been stretching the capabilities of his creativity and passions, Rawls has as a portfolio spanning through many mediums including music, television, movies, and more. Operating out of the New York area, Rawls has photographed over 200+ artists spanning many genres, written over 700 articles ranging displaying his passionate aspirations to keep evolving as his years in media continue.

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