'Independence Day' Critic Reviews

90%
MovieWeb:   2 reviews
61%
Rotten Tomatoes:   58 reviews
  • Lisa Schwarzbaum Entertainment Weekly (Top Critic)
    75
    It's the first futuristic disaster movie that's as cute as a button. Which, when all the special effects blow over, is what we Americans like in a monster hit.
    Full Review » 7 years ago
  • Caryn James New York Times (Top Critic)
    60
    The film has a genial it's-only-a-movie attitude that sets it apart, quite emphatically, from other blockbuster action movies.
    Full Review » 15 years ago
  • Mike Clark USA Today (Top Critic)
    88
    Though the movie isn't too deep, it's certainly a rousing state-of-the-art cartoon capped by an aerial-combat climax that, to its credit, isn't anti-climactic.
    Full Review » 15 years ago
  • Rita Kempley Washington Post (Top Critic)
    Maybe the moviemakers' mission was to boldly go where everyone in Hollywood has gone before: the bank.
    Full Review » 7 years ago
  • Kevin McManus Washington Post (Top Critic)
    As for the human characters, they give merely adequate back-seat support to the special effects that drive this big-budget thriller.
    Full Review » 15 years ago
  • Louis B. Parks Houston Chronicle (Top Critic)
    You know going in that Independence Day will have terrific effects and loads of action. But the filmmakers have also carefully crafted appealing characters and several good relationships, which they develop as the story unfolds.
    Full Review » 15 years ago
  • Roger Ebert Chicago Sun-Times (Top Critic)
    63
    The aliens, when we finally see them, are a serious disappointment; couldn't they think of anything more interesting than octopus men?
    Full Review » 15 years ago
  • Jonathan Rosenbaum Chicago Reader (Top Critic)
    The earnestness, the effects, and the notion of a whole world forgetting its differences to defeat a common foe carry a certain charm.
    Full Review » 7 years ago
  • Susan Stark Detroit News (Top Critic)
    100
    Full Review » 15 years ago
  • Todd McCarthy Variety (Top Critic)
    As unavoidably entertaining as it is hopelessly cornball.
    Full Review » 7 years ago
  • Globe and Mail (Top Critic)
    50
    Full Review » 12 years ago
  • Scott Rosenberg Salon.com (Top Critic)
    There's precious little reward in plumbing the world-historical implications of the screenplay.
    Full Review » 15 years ago
  • James Berardinelli ReelViews (Top Critic)
    50
    Unfortunately, and perhaps not unexpectedly, it doesn't live up to the hype.
    Full Review » 15 years ago
  • Kenneth Turan Los Angeles Times (Top Critic)
    60
    So much about ID4 is so old it's inevitable that homesick audiences, eager for familiar scenarios, will embrace it as if it's nothing but new.
    Full Review » 14 years ago
  • Nell Minow Movie Mom at Yahoo! Movies
    84
    Full Review » 3 years ago
  • Hollywood.com
    Spending a scant four weeks on script versus 13 months on physical production, as happened here, does have its drawbacks.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Rob Nelson City Pages, Minneapolis/St. Paul
    Independence Day Restores Order to the Millennium.
    Full Review » 5 years ago
  • Steve Biodrowski ESplatter
    Basically, this is almost perfect realization of the movie you eagerly anticipated when, as a kid, you saw some poster or coming attractions trailer for a 1950s-style alien invasion movie ...
    Full Review » 6 years ago
  • Film4
    60
    Insanely pompous and brilliantly exhilarating in equal measure.
    Full Review » 7 years ago
  • Carol Buckland CNN.com
    Splendidly cheesy entertainment.
    Full Review » 7 years ago
  • Laura Clifford Reeling Reviews
    75
    No matter how ludicrous and coincidental the plot gets, it never takes itself seriously.
    Full Review » 7 years ago
  • David Ansen Newsweek
    If I were a 10-year-old boy, I'd probably think it was the coolest movie going.
    Full Review » 7 years ago
  • Rob Gonsalves eFilmCritic.com
    20
    Forget government conspiracies about aliens -- what about the entertainment media's conspiracy to persuade America that this movie doesn't suck?
    Full Review » 7 years ago
  • Jeffrey M. Anderson Combustible Celluloid
    38
    No one who wants to see this movie needs me to recommend it to them, but if anyone wants to know, I say stay home and rent one of those other movies on video.
    Full Review » 8 years ago
  • Time Out
    Everything feels anti-climactic after the fireworks, but the moral is clear: it's the end of the world as we know it. And we feel fine.
    Full Review » 9 years ago