The first trailer didn’t really do it for me, but I now find myself entirely on board for a bad-fun sequel to the best-worst-funnest movie I ever waited on line to see. Independence Day: Resurgence is coming, and instead of exploding cities, this time it’s lifting cities up and dropping them back on top of themselves, and if that doesn’t really make any sense, all for the better.
I truly believe the original was a classic, though maybe I wouldn’t think that if I hadn’t been 12 years old. But it remains preposterously quotable (see how many of these you can hear in your head in the exact right cadence); the visual effects were spectacular at the time and completely hold up today; the big twist (a computer virus!) is so bananas you’re forced to judge the entire rest of the film by its own unique standards; and the plot and resolution are simple, straightforward, and internally logical (you kill the spaceship by flying a plane up its butthole).
The new one looks like more of the same, with maybe just a few more winks. They couldn’t afford Will Smith, so they just put his lines in his character’s son’s mouth and trust us not to mind. They’ve got Jeff Goldblum and bearded Bill Pullman hamming it up for paychecks, but they’re both so charming and glib about this impending apocalypse that their cheeseball dialogue is a strength and not a drawback.
Also, it’s the future now? And our jets have lasers? And we have space bases? And Bill Fichtner is there. And, “They like to get the landmarks.” The ideal summer blockbuster is unserious without being dumb. ID4 nailed it. I’m cautiously optimistic about this one.