Film Review- Independence Day (1996) Now I’ve already done a small of review of this but I wanted to do a more detailed review in the ultimate Summer blockbuster that is the most patriotic film ever to be made but is really a true architect of a great Summer Blockbusters.
Plot- Aliens from a mysterious planet decides to invade Earth and kill everyone and steal all natural resources and move on to other planets. Just like locusts. In simple terms the film tracks America’s attempt to stop them. There is intertwining stories that create the jigsaw of this film. There’s the smart nerd (Jeff Goldblum) who has just divorced his ex wife who works for the president. The story of the president (Bill Pullman) who is being challenged by critics of being weak. The fighter pilot (Will Smith) whose fiance is a stripper and wants to be an astronaut. And the redneck who is an alcoholic and is crazy because he was abducted by aliens. The intertwining stories of love, passion and hope all fit into place creating a fine summer blockbuster about aliens.
Review- Critics everywhere calling this a dumb movie, a sell out and just a brainless movie for zombified audiences. Well it’s isn’t the most intelligent film in the world. It’s no complex thriller like Memento or classic like the Godfather but why should we stigma Independence Day for being a a summer blockbuster where Jaws is heralded as a classic. There is cliche’s here with alien invasions and a cheesy script. However I judge films of how much I enjoy them and this is a film that I watch one day every year, on the 4th of July and I enjoy it every time. It’s exactly what you want for a summer blockbuster and gives that little more. It has explosions, most notably the White House exploding. Great special effects which hasn’t outdated at all. Even though it came out 16 years ago. It has a simple plot which is easy to follow, it’s funny, loud and overall a good popcorn movie. It’s not trying to be a oscar winning film with complex themes, it’s trying to be a film that “appeases the masses”, a film that is enjoyable for all the family and still to this day can be enjoyed.
The cast is also magnificent and brings the film to life even with a clunky script. The film that made Will Smith a Star because it demonstrates his likability, his charming persona and he is a funny guy. I’m a big fan of Jeff Goldblum, he can play the geeky character with a weak physique but still be stronger then most of the cast in stature. I like to see non typical action stars be a lead action star. Viva La Goldblum!! Also Bill Murray plays the archetype president with great substance. The president speech in this film is the most inspiring, patriotic speech to ever grace cinema. It just beats William Wallace Freedom speech to clinch the top spot. Randy Quaid plays the wacky redneck father with hilarity and it’s a shame his personal life has been strewn with addiction and jail because every film I see him in, he doesn’t disappoint. The rest of the cast is just as great and plays their role so well. Cliched as they maybe, the cast do there best to escape the cliche and just do it just because they are likable character that seem real, well the president is hard to believe, but it’s Bill Pullman so I’m not going to argue.
Independence day is a $75 million B- Movie, it’s a throwback to the old sci fi films which were lagging at this point. It rejuvenated the summer blockbuster because of it’s boldness and memorable moments. The ensemble cast, the different perspectives, the explosions, the end of the world situation. Those films have been common in recent times. The film has special effects that eclipse most films today, even though it’s 16 years old, nearly as old as me! The white house explosion is still a scene to marvel at. There are epic moments in Independence Day, funny moments, explosions and cool aliens. What more do you want for a film?! A true summer blockbuster that isn’t a dumb movie! It’s a brilliant throwback to sci fi films of the 1950’s, has a hilarious and “inspiring” script that creates lovable characters. I find it annoying that people call this one of the most dumbest movies of all time when there are films like Transformers and Battleship that doesn’t give two monkeys about characters. It’s all about the explosion for them. Also with the huge influx in remakes and sequels this film needs to have more credit, because Independence Day brings ideas from old movies and creates a new, fresh movie that is brilliant and enjoyable to watch.
Overall- A amazing summer blockbuster, it isn’t the smartest film but it isn’t the dumbest. It’s a blockbuster that still focuses on the characters but has great special effects, funny moments and brilliant looking aliens. It is a guilty pleasure that I watch every year. I’m not american but I love this film and I always find it enjoyable. It rejuvenated the summer blockbuster and even though the script isn’t the greatest and it does hit some cliches, it’s fin, loud and one of the greatest summer blockbusters out there that has a great and something that I haven’t seen replicated since. A really brilliant popcorn movie for everyone. I don’t care about the haters. Film Rating 8.5/10