You Thought Zoolander 2 Was Bad
This is Reuben and today is indeed July 4th, Independence Day itself. I’m not one of dem Americans so I don’t celebrate it, but I did watch Independence Day: Resurgence, the sequel to 1996 blockbuster Independence Day. That film was widely known to be stupid but fun. This film is just stupid. And truly, truly awful.
I walked into the cinema screening thinking this film was going to be just one of those average explodey blockbusters — probably worth it. What I got was utter arse — not worth it. I mean, going to the cinema is always a good experience whatever the film, but this was pushing it. Independence Day: Resurgence has so much wrong with it.
Zoolander 2, another crap movie this year, started pretty well and went steeply downhill. This thang started horrifically, and didn’t get much better. Well, I suppose after the intro I wasn’t audibly laughing at the film’s awfulness as much as I was. AS MUCH. Yeah, this film is laughably bad. But it’s not quite so bad it’s good. I mean, don’t go watching this at midnight when you’re in a stupid mood, it’s just not worth it. The Little Panda Fighter, however, is (oh boi). This film is just bad. Really, really bad.
It’s just so incredibly overblown. Everything looks fake. Often with crappy summer blockbusters it can be said that the visual effects are alright, but with this one they are most certainly not. CGI is used in every conceivable way to make the most plastic world out there — and a stupid one at that. In an alternative future where the planet had to rebuild from the rubble of ’96 (the first movie), why would London look exactly as it does now? I’m pretty sure the Shard is there at one point. That isn’t laughable though. That’s just dumb.
The script is laughable. It’s one of the most simple screenplays I’ve had to endure, on par with 2010’s Pokémon anime. Just when you think a idiotic one-liner is stupid, everything must be explained to the watcher in the most straight way possible, assuming the audience is a bunch of dinguses who know LITERALLY NOTHING, as Jeff Goldblum or any of the rest of the unlucky cast begrudgingly tell the audience “Yes, that is an alien ship”, or, “oh no, he’s going to shoot the aliens” (after the guy who’s going to shoot the aliens has already said he’s going to do that). So many things are needlessly explained and repeated. Things can be implied. We are not all idiots.
There are also about four presidents, or something. Mrs President is the worst thing to happen to cinema — whatever her name is. Then there’s this weird old guy who used to be president, yet is still greeted by Mr President. Then there’s another president at the end. What…?
The plot as a whole is pretty nonsensical. I suppose the premise makes sense in that Earth has rebuilt itself and is in preparation of another alien attack, but past that it goes all over the place. There’s this circle symbol which makes some woman who previously starred in Anti-Christ, as well as Nymphomanic Vol. 1 AND 2, (a prestigious CV indeed) confused but nothing really comes of it, other than some circular robot thing which comes from some stupid refugee planet and proves to be the crap fuel for a sequel — which better not happen. Then there’s this weird bloke who wakes up from a coma and is irritating. Then it turns out there’s a queen alien – or are there two? – and the Earth’s core is getting drilled and some douches in a boat do something and some kids drive around in a school bus and a load of other dumb crap. There’s also this thing where a few people get brain freeze. I’m left thinking through all of this; “Am I expected to care!?”
It’s just too big, too stupid, too convoluted. When you think it makes sense something gets thrown into the plot which never really amounts to anything, and so it’s just a load of fluff. When it comes down to it, all that matters is that aliens invade the Earth, and Earth has to fight back. But Earth is really crap at fighting back. Every time something stupid happened, I wanted the film to end. It’s just too damn long and ridiculous.
Also, why the hell is the first 40 minutes just references to the first film? It is played like you know all the characters like friends, as a lot of names, even, aren’t given, and you are left to guesswork a lot of the time. Not only does it alienate people who haven’t seen the first film (like yours truly), but IT’S BEEN FLIPPIN’ 20 YEARS. ALSO, GET THE FILM STARTED, MANG. IT’S BEEN AN HOUR AND ALL THAT’S HAPPENED IS, WELL, NOT A LOT.
There are so many characters, too. Too many characters is something many sequels do and they pay for it. Spider-Man 3, The Amazing Spider-Man 2, The Avengers: Age of Ultron, Ice Age 2, even — they all pay for it. Independence Day: Resurgence, I’d say, is the prime example of this. There are about 30 characters in the main cast who have to fight for screen time and character development – none of them getting enough of either. A few characters like Liam Hemsworth’s Jake Morrison and Jeff Goldblum’s David Levinson seem to act as the main characters, but neither receive any where near the character development they deserve. Well, Jake Morrison doesn’t deserve it. You know you usually don’t want characters to die? He really should have died. Man he’s a douchebag.
I don’t like any of the characters. The cringey acting didn’t help their case, of course. Goldblum really looks like he wants to shoot himself half the time. Sela Ward (Mrs President) is completely expressionless, Bill Pullman (President Whitmore) did weird smoulders, and William Fichtner (other president) just kinda says stuff.
It is not only the characters who aren’t given space to breathe. The whole setting is basically a lump of CGI, something that in other sci-fi films like it might have been actually shown to us. All I saw was a crowd of people at a government speech (who probably weren’t real people) and the city skyline of London – which should NOT have looked like it did — unless it was all a big ol’ coinkidink. It really wasn’t though. The writers just couldn’t think. There’s also the alien design, which is seen about twice. A shame, because it’s quite cool. Oh, but it’s coincidentally very reminiscent of Ridley Scott’s aliens in 1979. Everything is just as fantastically original as that in the film. Everything has just been seen before. All the alien ships, even, the moon base, look agonizingly familiar.
What about dat editing, then? Not something that usually comes up – especially in one of my film reviews; but it needs some slating here. The scene transitions are at big fault in this movie. Almost as if ending a character’s sentence, the scene is swapped for another in an instance – taking its toll on the pacing. It’s so stop-start, nothing is given space to breath, in any department.
AND WHERE THE HELL’S WILL SMITH!?
To conclude, the editing is not the only thing Independence Day: Resurgence gets horribly wrong. The script is one of the worst in a long time and lo and behold the acting is far from terrific, whilst nothing, from characters to setting and even the overly convoluted plot are given time to breathe. I grew to dislike most of the main cast of characters by the first hour, let alone the second. Everything in this particular summer blockbuster is incredibly overblown, and yet even the CGI isn’t impressive, and the important things as have already been listed are executed extremely poorly.
Don’t watch this movie, whatever you do.
Happy Independence Day!
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