Jack Hall, paleoclimatologist, must make a daring trek from Washington, D.C. to New York City to reach his son, trapped in the cross-hairs of a sudden international storm which plunges the planet into a new Ice Age.
On July 2nd, communications systems worldwide are sent into chaos by a strange atmospheric interference. It is soon learned by the military that a number of enormous objects are on a collision course with Earth. At first thought to be meteors, they are later revealed to be gigantic spacecraft, piloted by a mysterious alien species. After attempts to communicate with the aliens go nowhere, David Levinson, an ex-scientist turned cable technician, discovers that the aliens are going to attack major points around the globe in less than a day. On July 3rd, the aliens all but obliterate New York, Los Angeles and Washington, as well as Paris, London, Houston and Moscow. The survivors set out in convoys towards Area 51, a strange government testing ground where it is rumored the military has a captured alien spacecraft of their own. The survivors devise a plan to fight back against the enslaving aliens, and July 4th becomes the day humanity will fight for its freedom. July 4th is their ...Written by
Gustaf Molin <email@example.com>
The "futuristic" looking computer in the control center at Area 51 are components of an IBM AN/FSQ-7 Combat Direction Central, built in 1954 to protect the U.S. from a Soviet bomber attack. It was the largest and heaviest computer system ever built, the full system weighing 6,000 tons and taking up an entire floor of a bomb-proof blockhouse. Components of decommissioned systems were sold for scrap and bought by film and television production companies who wanted futuristic looking computers, despite the fact they were built in the 1950s. The components used in this film were previously used in The Time Tunnel (1966) and The Towering Inferno (1974) amongst many others. See more »
(at around 1h 50 mins) When Russell is sitting in the fighter jet he pushes a button and you hear "missile launch." It is impossible to launch missiles while a fighter is on the ground due to the Weight On Wheels Interlock. It is possible to disable this function in some jets, but this is a highly unusual procedure, and the Marines/Navy would almost definitely not do this. See more »
If this isn't an insanely beautiful woman, I'm hangin' up.
Sir, I - I- I think you should listen to this.
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Frank Bollinger, originally from the art department is credited as "Alien Supervisor" because he wasn't member of the union, so he wouldn't be allowed to work in that department. See more »
The laserdisc special edition includes an alternate ending to the final aerial battle sequence. In it Russell Casse was rejected as a pilot for one of the jets to attack the alien ship approaching Area 51. However, he arrives at the end of battle flying his crop duster (which he has been towing behind his motor home) with a missile strapped to it. He then flies the crop duster into the energy beam weapon of the alien ship to bring it down. See more »
As a rule, I don't like high-concept movies. However, Independence Day is one of the few with some merits. It is also the best film to-date by German sci-fi/action director Roland Emmerich. The greatest flaw of Indepence Day (aka ID4 due to initial copyright problems with the Independence Day title) is the excessive jingoism. Completely America centric, it seems that the rest of human civilization is helpless without the Yanks. The American President is not just the only world leader fighting for a free world, he even moonlights as a fighter pilot attacking the aliens.
However, its still a damn entertaining film. There is a large ensemble cast of good actors, some in career best roles. Will Smith was really launched as a movie star by this film and he has some very funny lines. Jeff Goldblum actually looks nerdy-cool as a scientist who likes to play chess in the park. And Bill Pullman is the clean-cut American President who proclaims that July 4 will no longer be an American holiday, but a world holiday! The rest of the ensemble cast includes small but meaty roles for Judd Hirsch, Randy Quaid and Vivica Fox. Harry Connick Jr. has a small part but blows it completely.
The things that make ID4 watching is that something is always going on. There are plenty of one-liners and the one-dimensional character all have their peculiar personality traits and quirks. The action scenes are impressive and in fact this film has the largest number of miniatures ever built. That record will probably never be broken because digital technology is limiting the use of miniatures. If you can let your hair loose and just want to enjoy a light movie without letting the America is Great propaganda get to you, ID4 is for you.
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