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Independence Day: Resurgence Blu-ray Review

Reviewed by on Oct 26, 2016
Rating: 3 Star Rating

Kidzworld reviews the Blu-ray for huge effects film Independence Day: Resurgence. Does it have cool extras? Is this a fun sci-fi action movie keeper for your collection?

By: Lynn Barker

In Independence Day: Resurgence, sequel to the popular 1996 film, it’s 20 years later and time for the next generation (i.e. Will Smith’s son Dylan and President Whitmore’s daughter Patricia, little kids in the 1996 film) to fight the beefed up returning alien army. Starting off , she is in love with Liam Hemsworth’s flying ace character Jake and he and Dylan hate each other. Gotta get over it to save the planet!

Liam Hemsworth as Jake prepares to fly a new fighter jetLiam Hemsworth as Jake prepares to fly a new fighter jetCourtesy of 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

Since 1996

It’s been twenty years since Earth banded together to kick alien invader butt. Now a united Earth has the Earth Space Defense system. We’ve used the alien technology to combine with our own to make sure we are safe if they come back. The Area 51 base is now defense H.Q. with David Levinson (Jeff Goldblum) as its head. Steven Hiller (the Will Smith Character in Independence Day has died test piloting and his step-son Dylan (Jessie T. Usher) is now the flying ace commanding The Legacy Squadron.

Dylan and Jake and their commanderDylan and Jake and their commanderCourtesy of 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

Presidential daughter Patricia Whitmore (Maika Monroe) is grown up and in love with bad boy pilot Jake (Liam Hemsworth) who just had his wings clipped for risking Dylan’s life on a training mission. He’s now on the moon running a space tug along with his bestie Charlie (Travis Tope).  Poor President Whitmore (Bill Pullman) was driven mad by an alien mind meld in the first movie and has been “resting”. Poor wacky scientist Dr. Okun (Brent Spiner) has been in a coma.

President Whitmore (Bill Pullman)President Whitmore (Bill Pullman)Courtesy of 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

Are They Coming Back?

ESD Director David Levinson is in Africa and meets with old flame Dr. Catherine Marceaux (Charlotte Gainsbourg) and warlord Dikembe Umbutu (Deobia Opari) whose army had been fighting aliens left behind. Together they discover, whoops! The aliens sent out a distress call to their home planet. When a huge spherical ship arrives on the moon, Levinson thinks it doesn’t belong to the same alien race but the U.S. President (Sela Ward) has it blasted anyway.

Dylan meets the U.S. PresidentDylan meets the U.S. PresidentCourtesy of 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

What is That Sphere?

Against orders (only way he rolls), Jake takes a moon tug and picks up Levinson, Marceaux, Umbutu and a government flunkie and they go to the crash site to examine the remains. They find an undamaged smaller sphere and decide to take it to Area 51 for analysis. Meanwhile a ginormous mothership starts destroying half the planet by sucking up cities and dropping them on….other countries! It begins drilling a hole in the middle of the ocean to harvest the heat of Earth's core which would end our planet.

The giant mothership lands on earthThe giant mothership lands on earthCourtesy of 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

Area 51 and the New Fight

Upon the space tug's arrival at Area 51, Dr. Okun wakes up from his twenty-year coma and opens the smaller sphere which turns out to house an intelligent, all virtual race no longer using physical bodies. The female voice explains that it is from a planet once destroyed by the bad aliens. The ship we destroyed was a lifeboat meant to transport as many Earthers as possible to a refuge planet where a war against the aliens is being planned. Whoops!  More alien mind contact reveals to Whitmore that the aliens have a queen who controls their hive mind and she is coming to get the good guy alien sphere. Can we stop her? Can we save Earth’s core? Can we one day team up with good guy aliens to defeat the baddies?

Humans fight a wave of alien shipsHumans fight a wave of alien shipsCourtesy of 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

Special Extra Features

  • Deleted Scenes- there are a few nice, character scenes that are great to watch and more with U.S. President (Sela Ward) including her death. There are more cool visual effects cut from the fllm that are totally finished, including an alternate opening to the movie. These are well-worth checking out.
  • The War of 1996 – is a fake T.V. news special on what has happened on earth and in space since the original alien invasion including the creation of a multi-national Earth Space Defense headed by the Jeff Goldblum character. We learn how the Will Smith character died and all about the building of a moon base and a re-thinking of Area 51. If you haven’t seen this film yet, watch this first!  It will explain a lot!
  • It’s Early Albuquerque – is another fake TV local talk show in which the host interviews David’s dad Julius Levinson on the book he wrote after the 1996 invasion called “How I Saved the World”. David pops up and, reluctantly, gets interviewed as well.  All in silly good fun. Check out the crawl running across the bottom of the screen. Very funny stuff.

Jeff Goldblum and Liam Hemsworth's characters discover the alien sphereJeff Goldblum and Liam Hemsworth's characters discover the alien sphereCourtesy of 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment
  • Another Day: The Making of Independence Day: Resurgence is a pretty thorough examination of filmmakers and actors on huge sets at Albuquerque Studios (which this reporter visited). Director Roland Emmerich discusses the much updated special effects he was able to use now that he didn’t have in 1996. New and original actors and characters are discussed and Jeff Goldblum ad libs on set while Brent Spiner (Dr. Okun) talks about his funny character and Vivica A. Fox discusses her character, Dylan’s mom evolving from a stripper into a hospital administrator. Production Design, Art Direction, concept art and the amazing sets are explored. We go to the sets for Area 51, Alien Prison, Command Center, Moonbase and more. The 3 types of aliens in the film are shown and discussed as are the huge ships on set and the SPFX versions. The CGI scale is humungous as entire cities fly through the air and fall on other cities. Crazy stuff. A really nice “making of” feature.
  • Gag Reel – I love these. This one features Goldblum ad libbing and goofing off on set, getting kissed by the cast, everybody blows lines and jokes while teen Joey King constantly chases a runaway dog on set. Fun as usual.
  • Concept Art is exceptional for a big sci-fi feature like this.
  • Audio Commentary by Director is interesting for the most part.

The alien queenThe alien queenCourtesy of 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

Wrapping Up

Independence Day: Resurgence succeeds bigtime in the amazing effects category; cool ships, cool weapons etc. Love seeing all my fave 1996 cast back and the younger generation in the film is fine. The movie is just over-stuffed with too much illogical story on too many fronts and too many characters to develop them enough for us to care much and it doesn’t help that Will Smith didn’t return as Capt. Hiller.

Using alien technology against themUsing alien technology against themCourtesy of 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

The Blu-ray (we didn’t cover the 3D version) looks and sounds great. Extras are pretty complete. The “Making Of” featurette really gets into the life-sized on set ships, weapons, SPFX and more. The actors comment a lot. Some of the extras are just silly fun. The Blu-ray is worth adding to your collection. As we did for the feature film in theaters, we go 3 stars. 

Independence Day: Resurgence Blu-ray Rating:3

Blu-ray cover artBlu-ray cover artCourtesy of 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

Independence Day: Resurgence is in stores now!


Have Your Say

Do you love crazy cool special visual effects? Were you a fan of the original film? Do you even care that characters and story are kind of all over the place in this film? Comment below!