– Paulie Spiceflow –
Back in 1996, we didn’t have the grand scale, big budget apocalyptic movies that we have today. It was a time before Marvel and DC started making movies. CGI was still evolving. It was perfect timing for Independence Day, an alien invasion movie on an unprecedented scale with a brilliant promotional campaign. The whole project was ahead of its time, which allowed it to earn huge bucks and leave an indelible mark on American summertime movie-goers.
With all these advantages, Independence Day overcame a plot hole riddled script, cheesy dialogue and bad jokes to earn over $300 million. The sequel, premiered this weekend with the same flaws but none of the advantages. It had to stand on its own.
The big bad aliens, which suspiciously resemble the nightmare monsters from the Alien franchise, return in an even BIGGER ship with nastier weapons. Yep, Director Roland Emmerich and co. decided to step it up a notch with a ship the size of the North Atlantic. A cast of old characters and new, sputter about their lives filling you to all that has happened in the last 20 years. The story is almost identical to the first film: aliens invade, we think we can defend ourselves but we can’t, Jeff Goldblum has to come up with something. Just like the first movie, only with a bigger budget and some new special effects. Seriously, this movie offers very little other than a repackaging of the original film.
The movie is largely marketed towards younger audiences that weren’t born yet when the original premiered. They also grew up with a steady diet of big budget sci-fi action movies of equal or greater scale than ID4 (as some called it). Of all the stars of the original, the only name they would recognize is Will Smith, the one star who did not return for the sequel. No one under 21 knows who Bill Pullman, Brent Spiner, or Jeff Goldblum are. Sorry but none of them have graced the covers of entertainment magazines lately. The producers tried to compensate by adding Liam Helmsworth, Maika Monroe, and Jessie Usher but none of them have near the charisma or appeal of Will Smith.
The theme of human resilience is completely lost in one of the cheesiest, dumbest movies of the year. There were also some bad speeches about human unity, which didn’t make much sense. Resurgence begins with the Earth already unified in reaction to the first invasion. The technology presented in the movie has no definition or any attempt at plausibility. The military chain of command and politics were all sophomoric depictions at best (movie was aimed at non-voters anyway). Death is treated like a minor inconvenience, and is even used as comic relief at times.
Director and Producer Roland Emmerich is showing his model and style are obsolete. What worked in the 90s clearly does not work in 2016. With bombs like Day After Tomorrow, White House Down, 2012, and Godzilla (1998) he has yet to repeat his one-time Independence Day success. I won’t even get into the horrific way he and his writers bastardize science in their movies. I also won’t bother asking why the title of the film is “Resurgence,” which barely fits the premise of the movie. If Resurgence bombs, look for studios to finally come to the realization that Emmerich sucks at making movies and needs to be stopped.
Paulie Spiceflow is a regular contributor, movie reviewer and unbelievable smart ass. He prides himself on his excessive knowledge of movies, TV, books, internet memes, and pop cultural references. During college, he spent minimal hours studying but took full-advantage of the free internet and lack of bills to broaden his knowledge in numerous genres including spoof comedy, fantasy, Shakespeare, military history, zombies, and cartoons.