Independence Day was once merely the U.S. national day of celebration. Then, in 1996, it became synonymous with two other things, the birth of Will Smith: Hollywood Superstar, and the death of the credible blockbuster, something we still mourn with every Transformers and Fast and Furious sequel.
Though the aliens arrive and strategically position themselves across the globe, our action takes place in America – because let’s be honest who else is going to do it right? Without warning these huge round ships arrive and hover silently but ominously over major cities, causing much trepidation. Are these visitors naughty or nice?
You might want to take a quick glance up at the poster before you worry about spoilers…
With chaos ruling and humanity a fractious mess, key individuals congregate to decide how best to resist this all powerful invading force. Jeff Goldblum plays a scientist whose wild theories might actually have merit. Will Smith is just another U.S. fighter pilot, albeit one who finds himself in the hottest of hot seats, and of course Bill Pullman is the president of the United States. Decried as a man out of touch and too passive, it is his Big Speech that unites the huddled masses, his rousing words that incite One Last Big Push, his impassioned oration that attempts to deflect the fact that the key to circumventing the alien technology is a guy with a laptop.
Frankly I detest Independence Day and all of the films like it. Jingoistic propaganda spewing bile designed to please the lowest common denominator while also keeping Aerosmith in work through the nineties. But I can see the point to this crap, and I can’t ignore the fact that it does stir the juices. I always strive to distance myself from those who claim to be connoisseurs of anything with too wide a scope. Who am I to say that product A is better than product B when both seem remarkably similar?
But there’s a big difference in pretending to pick the eyes out two fine dining experiences, and realising that a well prepared dish is preferable to five day old pizza served in a shoe.
As a film Independence Day is the equivalent of standing on a street corner and screaming “I don’t like the stuff you don’t like”, you will likely find passers by agree with you, despite the fact you are saying and proving nothing.
Final Rating – 4.5 / 10. Asking movie goers to prove their allegiance to humanity by paying money for tickets to this tripe should embarrass all involved.