Independence Day: Resurgence is the sequel that has been 20 years in the making. Will fans love it like the original or was 20 years too long a wait?
Is the 20 year wait for a sequel to 1996’s Independence Day too long?
With the team behind the original returning along with Bill Pullman, Jeff Goldblun, Vivica A. Fox and Brent Spiner, fans will get to see how the planet recovered after the last alien attack. Liam Hemsworth, Jessie T. Usher, Maika Monroe and Sela Ward are joining the cast as Earth prepares to do battle once again in Independence Day: Resurgence.
Set in real time (20 years after the original), we see that Earth has changed in many ways. Humans are using recovered alien technology and the countries of the world declared peace and united on a defence program to protect the planet from future attacks. They always suspected the others would return and thought they were prepared, but so were the aliens. Will Earth survive another attack or will the aliens get their revenge?
20 years is a long time to wait for a sequel and fans have been sceptical if the team of Roland Emmerich and Dean Devlin can recapture the magic of the original. What’s clear to see from Independence Day: Resurgence is that they didn’t want to repeat what they did before but expand on what made it special. The action and the humour remains, helped along by returning characters, but the game has changed. All the antis have been upped and this time, nobody is safe.
One of the major changes is the fact that Will Smith’s Captain Hiller is not in this instalment. The character has been killed off in a freak accident while testing a new aircraft. An image of Smith does appear in the form of a photo belonging to his stepson Dylan, played by Jessie T. Usher, but a surprise appearance by the hero of “The War of 96” is not going to happen. With so many familiar faces returning for the sequel, fans lost faith at the news of Smith’s absence. Having seen the film, faith should be restored as the characters of Dylan and Jake bring the traits of Captain Hiller between them. It doesn’t feel forced and fills the void left by Hiller in a fresh way that audiences will hopefully welcome.
Along with the surprise that Smith wasn’t returning for Independence Day: Resurgence, Mae Whitman and Ross Bagley were also left off the cast list. Their characters, however, were recast. Fans and the media speculated that Whitman was replaced by Maika Monroe as Patricia Whitmore as she wasn’t “conventionally pretty” and to her credit, Mae has stayed silent over the casting. She has carved a successful career for herself and Bagley has also kept acting as an adult. Fans felt that the recast were unfair on the actors but as there has been no official statement on the matter, we may never know what the reasons truly were.
So how do our new and returning characters link up? Well, Dylan is following in his step-father’s footsteps and is a pilot for the Earth Space Defence (ESD) Program. Also a pilot for the ESD are Jake Morrison (Hemsworth), Charlie Miller (Travis Tope), Rain Lao (Angelababy), and Patricia Whitmore who left the ESD to take care of her father. The former President (Pullman) hasn’t been doing so well with he, and the other sufferers of Alien Residual Condition, having visions of symbols. David Levinson (Goldblum) is now the director of the ESD and works closely with the current President of the United States, President Lanford (Ward).
There are many shocks and surprises for audiences, with the main one being the fact that the script and storyline are actually quite good. There are of course some corny moments in the dialogue but let’s face it, that’s something that made the original special. The plot flows well with a great balance between the action and plot building sequences and even though it might be lacking in some of the iconic moments of the original, that doesn’t mean it’s any less enjoyable. Credit where it’s due, the filmmakers didn’t try to make a carbon copy of the first installment but what they delivered is a very cohesive and enjoyable action film. Good action sequences, good special effects, good story and not totally annoying performances.
This may seem like a conversation around the film but if any more details are revealed, then it will give away too much from the film. All fans need to know is that the aliens are back, bigger and badder than ever and all they need to do is enjoy the ride.
P.S. I rarely recommend this, but IMAX is the way to go to watch the film.