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Independence Day (1996)
Short plot summary

The world is saved from murderous aliens by five main characters, including the US president who flies one of the attack planes.

What our panel of critics thought
"All I'm saying is if the aliens turn up now (2002) with George W Bush as president I hope George can fight them off with an oil contract or something. And if this don't give Cheney THE heart attack nothing will. Damn."

"The special effects blew my skirt up, or maybe I was standing too close to that under pavement air stream again?"

"A movie which is actually improved by watching adverts in it."

"A movie to watch when you are doing something else."

"This movie makes no sense whatsoever, but the characters all look young and healthy and it directions its juices in all the right places."

"May I just complement all the white boys in this movie for their wonderfully sexy tans?"

"So, all that money on special effects, and it still all comes down to a single crop spraying guy who spends most of his time getting drunk?"

Please tell me the ending or whole plot if necessary

Big flying saucers appear throughout the world, they want to kill us all.

Tanned, fit looking scientist (Jeff Goldblum) discovers a way of penetrating alien space ship defenses (a computer virus) so mankind can blow them away. Will Smith plays a US airforce pilot.

All aliens seen off after inflicting terrible damage to world landmark buildings in show stopping CGI excitement-fest. The Empire State Building gets it, along with the White House.

Crop spraying dude flies ship into alien craft to blow it up. After this, other alien ships give up and go home all on 4th July, the all new Independence Day, thereafter giving the English a break for the first time in over 200 years.

Quotable quotes (real)
"Oh God I hope they bring back Elvis."
Smith punches alien - "Welcome to Earth" pause "That's what I call a close encounter."
"You punched the president?"
Other comments

A great movie to have on when you are writing a letter to someone or when you are on the internet.

The whole movie is a load of puff, although the special effects are memorable and were really the whole point of the movie in the first place.

In 1996, when this movie came out, we could not image the White House blowing up like that. Things have changed considerably since then.

This movie remains a movie high up in popular recollection that you need to see just in case the movie comes up in any discussions with street based traders.

Date of review

February 27, 2002

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