Sunday, 26 June 2016


Starring: Jeff Goldblum, Brent Spiner, Bill Pullman, William Fichtner, Liam Hemsworth, Jessie T. Usher, Maika Monroe, Sela Ward, Judd Hirsch, Vivica A. Fox and somebody called Angelababy.

Written by: Roland Emmerich, Dean Devlin, Nicolas Wright, James A. Woods and James Vanderbilt. Directed by Roland Emmerich. Budget $165 million. Running time 120 minutes.

It would appear that the tagline of this movie: 'we had twenty years to prepare, so did they' didn't  extend to the film makers, Emmerich and Devlin and the three other writers this disaster took to write. Because in stead of spending 20 years crafting this movie, they appear to have spent the last 19 and a half years sort of putting it off, hoping they could do it on the night before it was due in, a bit like that home work you're given over the summer holidays which you don't start till the night before you're due back at school.

I didn't go in expecting something revolutionary or ground breaking but I was franking expecting something a tad more entertaining and clever than this, by god it's just so lazy and inept. Now I know the first film isn't masterpiece of script writing but for the sweet mother of god, is this really the best they could do? They've managed to go from one of the most iconic and fun, summer-blockbuster sf films of all times to this sac of bland, homogenized, tedious, mental bum-fluff that won't even be remembered in 20 weeks, let alone 20 years.

I'm not going to bother explaining the plot, like I normally do because E&D couldn't be bothered either. But it's got something to do with the mother alien coming to earth to do what her children couldn't and it's all set against the clock with a pointless countdown and the threat of the Earth being destroyed, but luckily with just 2 minutes to spare, Earth wins and the flying saucers all die. Oh shit, sorry spoiler alert.

Lacking all the charm and excitement of the first, infinitely better film, and just going with the old Hollywood adage of 'bigger is better' this just cranks ups the ante to 11 and hopes it'll be enough. So, out go the 15 mile wide UFOs replaced with one 3000 miles wide. And instead of a variety of American landmarks and tower blocks gloriously destroyed we have a sequence, shown extensively in the trailer, of China getting dropped on London along with the quote, 'Hmm they like to go for landmarks'. And instead of a rag-tag team of flyers coming together in what's left of the Earth's jet fighters for one last showdown we have all the new kids on the blocks flying super human/alien hybrid star fighters.

This film has two saving graces. One is the frankly hilarious sequence of destruction porn that sees a returning character die in a hilarious, 'didn't see that coming, not!' moment and the sheer amount of unintentional laughter this film generates. it's not intended as a comedy, but you're going to laugh at it a lot!

I mean, the script is awful - embarrassingly so, the performances from the the new members of the cast is piss poor and the by-the-numbers plot-points and the bland three-arc story structure is insulting, but it does have wonderful performances from Brent Spiner, Jeff Goldblum and Pill Bullman and some top notch great special effects.

Yet another disappointing summer blockbuster sequels that actually ends with the cast literally begging Fox for a third movie with a huge massive collective wink to camera, while E&D hold up a sign that reads: Please.

I for one hope it doesn't happen.

You won't come out hating your fellow man and wishing the aliens had won but you will feel as if an old cherished family member has just been finger-banged by the vicar.


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