Belfast Telegraph

Independence Day - Resurgence review: Alien epic embraces cliches

By Damon Smith

It is 20 years since US President Thomas J Whitmore (Bill Pullman) issued his rallying cry to the human race. In the aftermath, survivors salvaged alien technology to create new weapons systems.

They also initiated the Earth Space Defense (ESD) under the direction of David Levinson (Jeff Goldblum) as an early warning of future incursions by hostile extra-terrestrials. And on the eve of the July 4 celebrations, an alien destroyer arrives in response to a distress call from the fallen fleet. New US President Elizabeth Lanford (Sela Ward) commands elite pilots to take to the skies, including Dylan Hiller (Jessie Usher), Jake Morrison (Liam Hemsworth) and Charlie Miller (Travis Tope).

Meanwhile, Levinson seeks a scientific miracle aided by a team including French psychiatrist Dr Catherine Marceaux (Charlotte Gainsbourg) and Area 51 boffin Dr Brakish Okun (Brent Spiner), who has a human-alien psychic condition.

But Resurgence lazily embraces disaster movie cliches, while the actors struggle to make an impact above the din of the pyrotechnics and the orchestral score.

Three stars

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