December 3, 2021

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Independence Day: Resurgence; Bigger and More Bombastic but Not Better

The release of the film Independence Day in 1996 was enough to make many film lovers discuss the sci-fi genre film about an alien attack on this earth. Massive destruction, a very ‘Murica’ story, quite cheesy but memorable dialogue , one of the best visual effects of its time, as well as a way to defeat aliens that look really but unexpected, make this film one of the classic sci-fi films . After 20 years, 20th Century Fox finally released a sequel entitled “Independence Day: Resurgence”.

The film’s story takes place in the 2016 ‘alternate universe’ Earth, 20 years after the alien attack on July 4, 1996. The Earth in this universe has very advanced technology because humans have studied the alien technology left in the 1996 attack, both for technology to help humans also for defense technology. The world is also safe and peaceful and the countries are united (although Murica is still the leader).

The plot of the story is actually a typical sci-fi film , there are no significant surprises. Alien attacks, destruction here and there, a group of heroes arrive, monsters appear, there are stranded children, and so on. Unlike Independence Day which has an unusual story – whose ending is so unexpected –, this film does not offer a new story even though it tries a new, more futuristic way. It’s not that I don’t like it, but I have expectations like when I watched Independence Day for the first time when I was a kid. Fortunately, this film features visual effects that are pleasing to the eye (although there are still parts where the CGI looks rough).

There is also no characterization that stands out, it even feels ordinary. Jeff Goldblum just being Jeff Goldblum, Liam Hemsworth is still like Gale in the Hunger Games. Even though Bill Pulman still has time to deliver an encouraging speech, it’s sadly not as good as the first film. In addition, the chemistry between the characters is still lacking, especially the father-daughter and mother-son relationship . I don’t buy their relationship, even for me who is very easily carried away.

What can be expected from IDR is 120 minutes full of destructive action and stunning visuals . The duration is 25 minutes shorter than the previous film (145 minutes) as well as several sub-plots to introduce new characters and ‘refreshment of memory’ to the events of 1996, as a result there is no maximum character development. There is only destruction from one place to another so fast. Not that I’m complaining – in fact I like it –, but unfortunately there is no interlude as enjoyable as Will Smith’s character and memorable dialogues like the previous film.

Independence Day: Resurgence is perfect for those who like sci-fi films with the theme of mass destruction with good visuals at a fast pace , but those who want a fresh sci-fi story may not like it but there is still a possibility to like it. For those who liked the first Independence Day, it will be nice to see several characters (except the character played by Will Smith) re-played by the same actor and see the continuation of the Independence Day universe getting bigger. For those who haven’t watched it, maybe there are some parts that are lost but still can follow the outline of the film.

I love this film, but not as mind blowing as its predecessor. As good as expected, it could probably be said to be better. Looking at the ending of the film, it looks like there will be a sequel, just like most other Hollywood films.