When aliens in an enormous spacecraft suddenly arrive in Earth's atmosphere and start blowing things up, it falls to a cocky pilot (Will Smith) and a goofy scientist (Jeff Goldblum) to save the planet from total destruction. With plenty of action, special effects sequences and pithy one-liners, Independence Day is one of the 1990s' best popcorn flicks. Bill Pullman co-stars as the gung-ho president who urges his citizens to fight back.
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- Will Smith, Bill Pullman, Jeff Goldblum, Mary McDonnell, Judd Hirsch, Robert Loggia, Randy Quaid, Margaret Colin, James Rebhorn, Adam Baldwin, Brent Spiner, James Duval, Vivica A. Fox, Harvey Fierstein, Lisa Jakub, Mae Whitman, Bill Smitrovich, Harry Connick Jr., Giuseppe Andrews, Devon Gummersall, Leland Orser, Robert Pine
- Roland Emmerich
- This movie is
- DVD and Blu-ray
- Top 100 Thrills nominee
- 1997 Academy Award®
- Best Visual Effects
- Best Sound nominee
PG-13Sci-fi destruction and violence
English, Spanish (Neutral)Closed captioned
YesLanguage and sound
English: Dolby Digital 5.1, English: Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround, French: Dolby Digital 2.0 SurroundOther features
Color; region 1 encoding; interactive menus; scene access
Widescreen Anamorphic 2.35:1Subtitles
English, French, Spanish (Neutral)Closed captioned
NoLanguage and sound
English: DTS 5.1 Surround, Spanish (Neutral): Dolby Digital 5.1, French: Dolby Digital 5.1Other features
Color; interactive menus; scene access; audio commentary; trailer; trivia; interactive game.
Common Sense Note
Parents need to know that Independence Day is an action-packed science-fiction film filled with scenes of the fiery destruction of entire cities and the people who live in them, along with smaller scale personal fatalities and some pretty grisly aliens. The filmmakers take pains to introduce some very likeable characters, only to explode them soon afterward. This movie was the gold standard of sci-fi effects and air battles when it was released in 1996, and older kids and teens that have a firm understanding of the difference between fantasy and reality will enjoy the ride. There's some swearing (i.e. "hell," "schmuck," "ass," "s--t," "bastard," "goddamn"), and one scene takes place in a strip club with scanty costumes. A man who claims to have been abducted by aliens is teased with comments like "Did they do any sexual things?" There's an unmarried couple in bed; teens talk about virginity.
- Sexual Content
- A stripper passes some dancers onstage then finds some strippers backstage in very little clothing. A man who claims to have been abducted by aliens is teased with comments like "Did they do any sexual things?" Unmarried couple in bed; teens talk about virginity.
- Buildings, major landmarks, and citizens are destroyed by fireballs; cars careen through the air; airplanes explode; spacecraft, both large and small, wreak jet-ray havoc on the hapless Earth. Then, the aliens appear: tentacled, huge, slimy, and powerful. Scientists perform an autopsy on one that morphs into an even more grotesque creature. There are multiple aerial firefights, one-on-one serpent attacks, and an alien-speaking-through-a-human moment that's truly spooky.
- Some mild expletives and insults throughout: "hell," "butt," "s--t and bulls--t," "ass," "son-of-a-bitch," "bastards," "goddamn, "schmuck," "Jesus," "Holy God," "booty."
- Social Behavior
- It's clearly stated that the people of earth, divided into nations, religions, etc., have the ability to put away their differences and unite for their common interests. In this case, all the leaders of the world come together to fight for the right of the planet to exist. Also promotes self-sacrifice for the greater good.
- Coors, Arrowhead water, Minute Maid, Wells Fargo bank, IMB, Reebok, HBO, and heavy on the Coca-Cola.
- Drugs / Tobacco / Alcohol
- One character, a father of young kids, is a slurring, self-pitying drunk through most of the film, constantly swigging from a bottle. Cigars are passed out and smoked as a means of celebrating victory over the attackers, though one character does say, "Smoking is not healthy."
- Age appropriate
- Not an issue
- Depends on your kid and your family
- Not appropriate for kids of the age most likely to want to see it