HOLLYWOOD—I was super eager to see “Independence Day: Resurgence.” The teasers and trailers just gave the flick an ambiance that it would be epic on multiple scales, even though star Will Smith would not be returning for this sequel 20 years in the making. I must make a confession: I’ve never actually seen the 1996 flick “Independence Day” in its full entirety. I know it bad, but trust me one day I will find time to watch that classic people.
However, those venturing to the multiplex to see “Independence Day: Resurgence” will be greatly disappointed, and I mean greatly disappointed. Would I call it one of the worse movies I’ve seen so far in 2016, no, but I would indeed make the argument that it’s definitely on my list of worst flicks. The movie could have been so much grandeur in terms of its action sequences and overall level of dramatic flair.
This movie came across so tame I was disappointed that more epic battles didn’t occur between the aliens and America. It was almost after the aliens made landfall on Earth it was all about business of retrieving a particular device that would make them unstoppable.
There are plenty of returning faces from the first chapter like Jeff Goldblum, Bill Pullman, Vivica A. Fox, Judd Hirsch and a few others. What’s the problem here? These characters are relegated to back-up singer status in my opinion, when the writers could have clearly utilized them a ton more in the narrative. Why? These are characters fans of the first installment are well aware of, and to see them just waddle around and look like they’re doing something is so frustrating.
New stars Liam Hemsworth, Maika Monroe and Jessie T. Usher do their best to standout, but they standout alright for all the wrong reasons. As a spectator, it’s unfortunate because all of these characters seriously lack development. Even if you wanted to give the slightest tinge of care for these characters you really can’t because the charisma, the acting caliber is just not there.
As Jake, Hemsworth does his best as the wise-cracking underdog, who lacks the compassion to care after losing his family in the first attack. By his side is Penny (Monroe) who is the daughter to former President Whitmore (Pullman), who is on a downward spiral with the fear of the aliens amassing a bigger army to return to Earth. Also taking on the reigns of the new generation is Dylan (Usher) as the son of fallen hero Steven Hiller, who follows in his dad’s footsteps. His character is touted as the hero, but not for once did I get that impression from watching the actor on the big screen. Dylan has bad blood with Jake and seems close to Penny, but that’s about it we get on this character.
The biggest problem with “Independence Day: Resurgence” is the script, it’s terrible. The dialogue at times feels forced, the narrative seems to stall or implement these unnecessary subplots that make little to no sense, and as pointed out earlier, the character development is just horrendous. You simply don’t care about any of these characters in this movie. The script apparently has multiple cooks in the kitchen, and director Roland Emmerich who is known for producing flicks of massive disaster status (“The Day After Tomorrow,” “2012” and “White House Down”) fails to deliver those epic explosions, plight and visual effects that leave viewers wowed.
The movie lacks any form of urgency in my opinion, which makes the viewer leave the theater in disarray, as to why more wasn’t done to deliver a bigger, better and more exciting flick like its predecessor. “Independence Day: Resurgence” should have never surged to begin with.