If you saw my post last Saturday you’ll know I launched a new feature called Belated Sequels.
Over the coming weeks I’ll be looking at sequels that came out years after the original (or previous instalment) and asking you guys whether you think they were worth the wait.
This week’s is a no brainer as far as I’m concerned.
Independence Day: Resurgence (2016)
Previous Instalment: Independence Day (1996)
Time since last instalment: 20 years.
This is one of those films that for various reasons was stuck in what they call “development hell” for years. If it hadn’t been, we might’ve got it sooner and it might’ve been a better movie, but we’ll never know.
When the biggest star of a film decides not to return for the sequel you always have to wonder why. In this case Will Smith was missing from the line up.
The official word is that his absence was due to scheduling conflicts. According to director Roland Emmerich, he was originally meant to appear in the film as part of a “central father-son storyline”, but eventually two new writers were brought in and he was written out of the script entirely so that they could focus on the younger characters.
When will Hollywood learn that this almost NEVER works?!
I wonder if he just read the script and was like, “err, thanks but no thanks.”
They did manage to get pretty much everyone else back however but sadly it still ended up being horrible!
I only watched the movie the one time at the cinema so my memory of it is a bit vague, still, these are the things I remember disliking the most about it:
The younger characters who are meant to be the grown up daughter of President Whitmore (Bill Pullman), the step-son of Steve Hiller (Will Smith) and another guy who lost his parents in the first Alien attack, have all conveniently come together due to having various links to each other through the first film.
I didn’t find them overly interesting or particularly likeable, and a totally unnecessary feud between the two young male characters was forced in, presumably to have that, “I forgive you bro, now let’s save the world” moment at the end. It didn’t work for me and if it hadn’t been in there it would’ve made no difference to the story whatsoever!
The film did what all of these long awaited sequels do and that’s try to bring back all of the original characters in an attempt to win the audience over with familiarity and nostalgia. That’s absolutely fine provided they serve a purpose, but some of the characters in this film were either just kind of there, or their reason for being there wasn’t that believable.
Another crime that a lot of movies commit is having main characters survive scenarios that any minor character wouldn’t stand a chance against.
There’s a scene in this movie where for a second, it looks like they’re about to bump off Jeff Goldblum’s character’s dad when he gets hit by a tidal wave whilst fishing in his boat! Miraculously though, he emerges later, his boat now on the beach and him still sat in his seat (albeit a little dishevelled) without a mark on him. I’m not saying I wanted him to die but at this point I’m already not really enjoying the film and I’m thinking, “really?!”
Jeff Goldblum is the one redeeming feature, but unfortunately even he couldn’t save this movie.
Believe it or not I’m actually quite easily pleased. I don’t tend to dissect films unless they’re so bad that I feel like they’ve stolen my money and a couple of hours of my life along with it. With this one though, I would’ve been happy to walk out less than half way through, never wondering how it ended.
The first movie is a sci-fi classic with groundbreaking special effects and one of the biggest films to come out of the 90s. People will remember it just for the sheer scale of it. This one unfortunately is a forgettable B-Movie in comparison and in my opinion, definitely not worth the wait.
What do you think? Let me know below. 👇