Films that you thought were good, but aren’t

Over the years of my life I like to think I’m a somewhat consistent consumer of movies and entertainment in general. Give me something that’s a new idea, that should at least be competantly executed and make it at least interesting or fun enough to warrant watching. I’m not interested in romantic comedy (that being said, the last time that genre had a new idea a woman was putting sperm through her hair) but everything else is fair game. This seems at first to be a respectable and lofty (or aloof) set of values for a film or video game or book to follow but it misses out on some unsavoury characteristics that should be noticed and this is where these films fit in. Whether its horrific plot inconsistencies, bad storytelling or the gradual unpleasant feeling you get when you realised you were sucked into the film, these pieces of media were once loved and cherished like the sirens, and, their true nature revealed, are repulsed with equal gusto.

Independence Day

Independence Day was at a funny time in cinematic history. Indeed if an updated version of this film was released now we would summarily dismiss it in a heartbeat after recieving lashings of gritty superhero films and genuinely well made ‘family’ films. 1996 doesn’t feel like it was too long ago but from a film perspective it is miles behind. We had but one Pixar film that took 14 years to create and thus was marginalised by big cinema. Where was the large and popular but gritty and complicated films(see Lord of the Rings)? There was either independent films with low production values or high production monsters like this one which, in their effort to maintain a massive appeal, were blunted travesties.

I would be loath to call Independence Day an alien film because it clearly isn’t- its a disaster film; a genre that got tired pretty early on and I believe ended in its first form with The Day After Tommorrow. What makes Independence Day a bad film though? To begin with, the hammy acting from Brian Pullman of all people and a list of B-grade celebrities all of which have done nothing for anybody like the creepy Jeff Golblum, rising action movie star Will Smith and get this- Randy Quaid. The same Randy Quaid popularised by the Chevy Chase National Lampoon films Randy Quaid. Hell, he’s the hero in this particular film and like everyone else, a cardboard cut-out stereotype (in this case a drunk crop duster). Other stereotypes include a hyper-jew in Goldblum’s father, a pain-in-the-ass government high-up, a well meaning security guard with a heart of gold and several, several small innocent-faced children with a plethora of stuffed animals.

Independence Day for its sheer stupidity doesn’t end there. The storyline itself is a bizarre premise. Somehow aliens have not been seen until they are next to the moon irrespective of their massive ships and the hundreds of telescopers continously looking up at the sky. Then, despite a army-based Boeing 747 getting axed by an alien-generated ball of fire everyone still feels that these things are peaceful. These enormous discs of death then for no reason steal the world’s satellite to find out more about planet Earth. Think about that. You are a nation of parasitic world killers on one hell of a journey to get to planet Earth and you never planned or figured out what the planet was like? That’s like driving to a festival without knowing what the festival is about and not taking your wallet with you. It gets better though- aliens have a big shield which makes it immune to any attack but this is circumvented by a computer nerd implanting a computer virus into the mother ship. No really, Linux is that flexible that it can work on a freakin’ alien mothership. Other insults to your intelligence is having said computer nerd and F14 fighter pilot actually take an alien vessel into the mothership to plant a nuke, or the fact that, while aliens are at Earth for the resources, they have no qualms about razing half the surface and its inhabitants.

more later 


~ by freeze43 on August 30, 2008.

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