Twenty years ago, my older brother Bryan took me to see the first Independence Day movie. I distinctly remember three things about that day:
Sadly, the action is tame and pointless, with no shot being all that memorable or interesting. Yes, we get a moment or two where everything is destroyed in epic fashion, but it's nothing we haven't seen before. At this point I feel like a helpless bug doing the backstroke in the toilet, as a giant ass slowly blocks out the light (complete with ominous approach sound) before covering my entire world with an unbelievably thick layer of shit. Though, when you think about it, at least that bug got in that situation on accident. I asked for this mess. Again.
- I felt like a dickhead for not liking it. Everybody in the theater seemed to be magically sharing a collective boner for the movie that I simply didn't have. As I was sixteen years old at the time, my boner was unrelated. Basically, I thought the whole movie was pretty f--king stupid.
- My brother Bryan, depending on whom you ask, is a dickhead, in the fact that he is willing to embarrass himself or his younger brother at any given moment. He loved the movie and thought that it was pretty f--king awesome. He likes spectacles, aliens, and large explosions. And 3D. Like I said, a dickhead.
- The kid in front of us, also an idiot, decided it would be fun to lean back-and-forth in his chair super fast to the delight of his equally douchey-friends. That kid learned quickly this was a bad call, as my brother unleashed a two-footed/squat style blast to the back of the kids chair, totally spilling him out of it. The ensuing awkward silence was my favorite part of the film. But that's what you get for being a dickhead.
Last Thursday, or as we cool kids refer to it, opening night, I took my brother to see Independence Day: Resurgence. In 3D.
Bryan hadn't been down to my house in over three years and it just so happened the f--king stars aligned and we got a chance to go to place we hadn't been in two decades: a United States run by Bill Pullman. While my brother was genuinely looking forward to seeing the sequel, I can honestly tell you, I assumed it would suck a bag full of dicks. And it did. Like, a giant bag. Full of giant dicks.
Apparently in the two decades since the last invasion, the aliens have been getting ready for a rematch. Cool. Hopefully their new plans aren't foiled by a drunken asshole in the world's worst airplane, cause that would be a real bummer.
Back on Earth, we've all been sharing Cokes and a smile. It seems that destroying an entire race of tentacled aliens was exactly what we needed to put aside an entire civilization's worth of petty differences. And it doesn't hurt that they left behind some cool tech, too. See, if there's anything I've learned about humanity from these films, it's that a group of assholes trying to take over a peaceful people by force is un-f--king acceptable. Especially in America.
So, in an effort to make the world a safer place, we've gone ahead and put a military base on the moon, and with the help of some
dumb f--king young and handsome pilots, attached a giant f--king death ray to it. Ah, safety. Well, one day, a mysterious figure shows up (think a giant, silver, perpetually contemplative Pac-Man) without warning, and in our infinite wisdom, we instantly blow the f--k out of it. And even better? We throw a giant party immediately afterward.
Turns out, ye old ghost gobbler was trying to warn us of an impending attack, and the real aliens show up. Again. This time they're back with an even bigger
dick ship and a better plan. The ship is 3,000 miles in diameter! And the plan? Okay. The plan's pretty much the same.
In fact, so is everything else. But outside of the always-awesome Jeff Goldblum, every other aspect of this film is worse. Much worse, in fact. The holdovers that do return from the first one are hardly anybody we're thrilled to see again (hey! it's that doctor guy that looks like a coked-out version of Col. Sanders' younger brother/Arlo Guthrie!), but f--k, looking back? They're still the best part (but they're truly f--king terrible).
|You know how you know this guy is the f--king man? Yep. He's the one in a tank top.|
The new characters are all so one-note it's entirely laughable, as we're saddled with the likes of Handsome Dick, Orphaned Friend Guy, Will Smith's Kid, Asian Lady, Asshole Accountant and perhaps most unbelievably, African Warlord Dude (to name a few). All of them and their atrocious dialogue could be forgiven, however, if cool shit blowed up real good.
|Someone get her Bob Sugar on the phone.|
Also repeat offenders, are the Yays and Boos. They weren't with me back in 1996 when we hit that theater in Revere, Massachusetts opening day. Well, okay, the Yays weren't. I was sixteen. The Boos totally overwhelmed them.
|I'm pretty sure Bill Pullman moved to some remote island...|
...and continued his 'presidency'.
- Area 51 is now an alien prison. As far as this movie goes, that's f--king brilliant.
- I mentioned Asian Lady, and of course, she's super hot. Also of course, she has a strict dad obsessed with honor.
- Okay, even if the alien's biggest weapon of mass destruction is, uh, gravity, it's still rad as f--k when they destroy everything. With gravity.
- This is probably a Boo, but the unintentional comedy of a traumatic death scene sets a record for how totally unceremonious it is. I probably shouldn't be laughing when The Only Baby in the District of Columbia is swallowed whole by a collapsing building, but year, I totally did.
- You kind of have to cheer when the character William Fichtner actually gets to be President. Of the United States, no less. Not something expected, like the local yacht club, or The Association of Guys Who Look Like They'll Kill You In Your Sleep.
- Giant Alien Exo-Suit? Shockingly...this was pretty f--king cool.
- There was a point where I knew Bryan was also hating this f--king movie...and I loved it.
- I don't know if her name was Priscilla, but when the queen invades the desert, it's magical. In fact, it's almost the moment where you go, F--k it, I'm actually having fun now and forgive the 900 sins that came before it, But then like my mom in 8th grade, she starts wildly chasing a school bus. But unlike my mom, she never f--king catches it (and in either case, I'm horribly embarrassed).
- And finally, I got to see a (bad) movie with my big brother. Can't beat that.
|Okay, huddle up. Here's the plan:|
Everyone do and say something totally f--king stupid. Break!
- So, uh, I very, very vividly remember Vivica A. Fox's...uh, scene in the first one. When she was a stripper. Now, she's a doctor? The f--k is this?
- We've got a couple of weird bro-mances going on, all of which I could give a f--k about. Friend Guy and Handsome Dick's is bad, but what the Hell was with those two scientist guys? I thought that one dude was totally going to graduate that other guys' cylinder, ifyouknowwhatImean. Huh? Huh? Okay. I'll show myself out.
- We're also treated to lots of expository dialogue revealing snippets of awful backstory that really doesn't matter. Yeah, cool. Your Dad died after Uncle Phil threw Jazzy Jeff into his engine during a training mission. No one cares. Go blow up an alien's face, please.
- The original invasion led to major advancement in all our weaponry, including the army having f--king spaceships. Totally on board with this. But what I can't support? We've spent millions of dollars designing spaceships...and not one of them looks like the Millennium Falcon? Unacceptable.
- Speaking of government ineptitude, there isn't a single competent person in any position of power.
- Handsome Dick steals a spaceship without any issue. And he wasn't even transporting Poe Dameron.
- The former President can apparently go where ever the f--k he wants. Ol' President Whitmore enters an alien's prison cell, before a single person notices.
- Oh, and the Secret Service, let alone every other person on a military base, can't bring down that alien when he loses his f--king shit with their alien-enhanced guns. But you know who can? African Warlord Dude. With a machete. (and who the f--k lets this dude walk around with a machete? C'mon, people. Bit of a safety hazard, no?)
- Judd Hirsch's character was almost the worst thing in this awful film. I actually liked a Dear John when I was a kid, so I'm not going to totally throw him under the bus. But throw his character (and the person who created it) in front of a bus? That's sounds fair. As long as it's a school bus.
- The 3,000 mile wide ship is dumb, but f--k it, totally awesome, too. The fact that those 3,000 miles stop inches from the White House? That actually made me hate more. Like, five people I don't even know? I f--king hate them now.
- Hey, look. An ass crack. I like those. Oh, wait. It's an old man's...played for laughs. Nevermind. Those suck.
I've always loved old photographs. Especially...
the ones where everyone looks just like we remember them.
- Sorry, Hilary. We've already got a lady President. And her platform? Bomb everything.
- You know when the fate of the f--king world hangs in the balance, and two people talk about their relationship? I f--king hate that shit. You guys can kiss later. Hell, if the world is still here, maybe you guy's can f--k like dogs, okay? But this bullshit when humanity is on the clock? Shit's rude. There, I said it.
- I looked at the houses. This line made me want to look for a gun. Or a bomb for that house.
- My God, the plan to bring down the mothership is the worst thing ever. Basically, it's fly right at them and die. Plan Two? The plan in every movie ever. Fly inside, blow it up from the inside. Plan Three? Never see another movie again.
- African Warlord Dude? He reads the alien language. How? One of the old ships crashed down in his country. So, duh, he learned their whole language from ship wreckage...obviously.
- No lie, we've got some pirates in this movie. Like, Morons-chasing-gold-on-the-high-seas level of pirate...uh, age. Anyway, these a-holes end up with an important job, and it's remarkably awful. I crossed my fingers that Barkhad Abdi would show up and shoot them all in the dick. Er, dicks? But that didn't happen.
- I don't know who Nicolas Wright is, but I hope to never see him in another movie again. Ever.
- Controlled dive? Oh, f--k you.
- Welp, Bill Pullman's original speech is the kind of thing they play in baseball stadiums when the home team is down a run late. The new version? I don't think they should play it anywhere. Unless you want the whole stadium to kill themselves, thereby cancelling the game.
- Fine, it's not that bad, but is pretty terrible. Pullman's voice is all squeaky, which isn't exactly inspiring. But worse? It's given to a room full of random dudes. I'm pretty sure half of them went back to mopping the floor, but now they're doing it for America.
- And finally, yes, finally, in a film where the whole world has rallied together and put aside their differences, leave it to the good ol' Yanks to save the f--king day. Yep. In a battle with unwelcome aliens, this film made America great. Again.
One week ago, my brother and I saw Independence Day: Resurgence and there are three things I distinctly remember about that day:
- I bought the tickets. Twenty-four bucks ('cause of his f--king insistence on 3D). He bought the popcorn and soda (and thought twenty bucks was f--king cheap).
- It was his first time in a theater full of electric, all-leather recliners. He was totally impressed that the dumpy little town I live in had a theater like that.
- And when we we're leaving, the old guy in front of us announced, That was horrible. HORRIBLE!
What a dickhead.