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  • Warning: Spoilers
    Decent special effects and acting can't save the dopey tediousness of this made-for-TV sci-fi actioner that's ultimately done in by a clumsy plot and the worst title ever given a film, ever, ever.

    Despite the obvious comparison to the big-budget "Independence Day" of more than a decade prior, the only similarity between that blockbuster and this DTV nonsense is the alien-invasion story and the ridiculously convenient and inane deus ex machina plot devices that let our heroes save the day.

    Otherwise, this one is about aliens who decide to terraform the earth, using giant, robotic phalluses that burst out of the ground, and flying, spherical drones that protect a mother ship that emerges – suddenly! – from behind the moon.

    That's all we get.

    A ragtag group of nerds, teenagers and the president of the United States (!), team up to save the world. And it's a good thing they do, because this is one of those movies in which the only people who exist in the world are those with speaking parts. It's like the filmmakers spend so much money on special effects, they can't afford to pay an extra or two to stand in the background to at least make the town that's getting destroyed by alien robot drones look somewhat populated.

    Tom Everett Scott from "That Thing You Do," the only player of note in this drivel, has matured into a handsome and confident actor who needs to fire his agent, and hire one who can talk him out of idiotic films like this one, "Santa Paws 2" and "Mars Needs Moms." Seriously, dude's got some chops. There's gotta be a "Law & Order" or "CSI" franchise for this guy somewhere.

    Most of the other actors in this movie, surprisingly, give it all they've got. I mean, once their agent sent them a script that said "Independence Daysaster" on the cover, they should have been expected to phone it in. But these little nobodies act their little nobody hearts out, and it's so charming.

    Not charming enough, however, to make this a good movie, or one worth recommending you spend 90 minutes of your life with. Despite everyone's good intentions, "Independence Daysaster" is a disaster.
  • lkwrites30 June 2013
    While the average viewer should never get anywhere near them, I have a soft spot for low-budget genre flicks of the kind they produce for the SyFy Channel, and within those confines, this one's a real gem. Rather than take The Asylum's cynical but amusing formula of knocking off the title but little else of a current blockbuster, Daysaster goes the opposite route and has the chutzpah to rip off a beloved hit that's almost 20 years old in a fair amount of detail. Roland Emmerich's Independence Day is one of my favorite movies, and if you take the brazen plot point and dialog nods to it in W.D. Hogan's pic as loving homage rather than shameless theft, you'll probably have a blast. I know I did.

    The level of acting is pretty good for one of these flicks, where you're shooting for an underdog quality that will make you root for the low budget trappings rather than sneer at them. Tom Everett Scott is the star name here, and he makes an effective President, particularly when mixed with the goofy computer hackers (Emily Holmes and Iain Belcher are delightfully awkward interacting with the Leader of the Free World) he finds himself with for most of the movie. Meanwhile, Garwin Sanford is fun as his weasel of a VP and Ryan Merriman is a solid hero as the President's firefighter brother.

    While many of the plot points are lifts from the Emmerich flick (it's fun to watch the movie shouting out the ID4 lines it references as it references them... or maybe that was just me) and its big-budget knockoff Battle Los Angeles, there are a few clever new ideas in the way the nature of the alien threat provides openings for a small, plucky group of random citizens to fight back. The special effects aren't so bad that it's a distraction, and you can't argue that the design of the alien vehicles doesn't stand out.

    If you could imagine yourself watching a movie called Independence Daysaster for anything but derisive laughs, give it a try. This is one of the good ones.
  • ... comes one of the worst films you are likely to see in your lifetime, with (amazingly) a clever idea to the script that is totally lost in translation.

    For the benefit of IMDb members not aware of the dynamic that supports Canadian knockoffs like this: these films exist because and only because of a massive tax subsidy at multiple levels of government in Canada, aided and abetted by a weaker dollar (relative to the US buck) which calls out to US producers in search of higher profits like a Siren Song to Ulysses.

    The results can be excellent (Eureka) but are mostly horrible. When a film franchise dies in the US, a Canuck producer will buy the rights to a final sequel, a sequel designed to be "in profit" before the cameras even roll.

    That said, this is an Indedependence Day knockoff done so poorly that it includes lines of dialog (and actors and special effects) that will make you cringe. This is an ADULT film where alien invaders have wiped out all major cities on earth but somehow the earth is SAVED by a bunch of teenage computer hackers in a BARN.

    What more can I say??? The best performance -- the only credible performance -- is by Merriman. The entire 2 hr film has a total cast of about 7 people in all and the other 6 are forgettable.

    Is it possible to do a two hour film more cheaply?

    Clever those Canadians
  • Independence Daysaster did have a silly but also intriguing concept and title going for it, so it was definitely worth considering a viewing. As a movie, it is hardly a masterpiece of film-making- far from it- but it doesn't try to be and there is much worse around. For a SyFy original movie, it is neither among the best or worst, there are too many flaws to recommend but it is somewhat tolerable. The acting mostly is reasonably good here, almost everyone seems to be having some sort of fun acting in a way that doesn't try too hard or suggestive of going through the motions. The scenery is nice, simple but not in-someone's-basement sort of quality, the shot of earth from outer space view and what there is of the action is fun and edge-of-your-seat quality. The music was a mixed bag, sometimes rousing, at other times too much of a dirge and the sort of sounds and rhythms that you've heard more than once. While the acting is not bad, Tom Everett Scott was unconvincing as the president, he lacked cragginess and proper authority and seemed bewildered too. Like most SyFy originals, Independence Daysaster is badly hindered by its budget. The special effects look really cheap and are papier-mâché-like in quality, while it was clear from the photography and editing that Independence Daysaster was made in a rush and with not much love. The script isn't too complicated but at the same time comes as too simplistic and never strongly develops the characters, the inspirational speech was really clichéd and not one of those speeches that you want to take inspiration from, Scott's lack of conviction in delivery didn't help either. The story is a case of too much talk and being behind technology and not enough action, there are entertaining moments but not enough and there are too many dull stretches. The predictability levels are also high, and the suspense and genuine-care-for-situation levels low. The characters are not annoying as such and serve a point to the story, but they are never anywhere developed enough to make the audience connect with them. The aliens are under-utilised, not much of a threat judging from how people react to them and they are not in any way relateable. And then there's the science, not as infuriating as other SyFy original movies but far too silly to be believable. All in all, nothing special and not particularly a good movie but it's never really unbearably bad either. 4/10 Bethany Cox
  • jimmerw12 January 2014
    Warning: Spoilers
    *** POSSIBLE SPOILERS ***

    What happens when you take the movies INDEPENDENCE DAY and WAR OF THE WORLDS, mix in some poor CGI, weak actors and a dozen film school level sci-fi clichés? You get this disaster.

    This is just another one of the low budget Canadian sci-fi movies that are churned out on a seemingly weekly basis. The movie makers should be sued for ripping off the two aforementioned movies. And ripping them off poorly.

    I am a firm believer that some movies just don't need to be made and this one is high on that list. It also seems that the same theme is used in all cheap Canadian sci-fi movies. A rugged man and an attractive woman team up to save the world. Enough already. Either come up with some original ideas, or stop wasting the taxpayer grants you get to make these regurgitated movies from the Canadian film industry bargain bin of ideas.
  • Independence Day-saster (2013)

    ** (out of 4)

    It's the Fourth of July and President Garcette (Tom Everett Scott) is heading back to his hometown to visit his brother and son but before he can land on the ground the Earth is attacked by aliens. Now this small town and their hero must join forces to try and destroy the aliens before they wipe out the population. If you're wanting high art or class then INDEPENDENCE DAY-SASTER isn't going to be for you but those seeking pure "C" level entertainment should find a few quality moments here. Again, one really shouldn't be expecting any sort of masterpiece, classic or even a good film but I like the fact that director W.D. Hogan didn't try to make the picture something it's not and instead of trying to turn this into an "A" picture he instead delivered the goods on a cheap level. That's certainly a good thing because there's nothing more annoying than a low-budget film trying to do something it can't. This film doesn't shy away from the fact that they didn't have much money and instead they use it to their advantage by making the film fun. The fun factor at least makes the picture worth sitting through because you really do feel as if you're watching one of those sci-fi films from the 1950s that you'd see at the drive-in. The special effects are never believable but they're at least mildly charming in their own cheap way. The performances aren't anything spectacular but they're at least fun as well. This includes Scott who we haven't seen too much of lately. INDEPENDENCE DAY-SASTER isn't going to win any major awards but considering this played on the SyFy channel you should know that there's much worse out there.
  • Ffs, when will film makers realise that shaking the camera around in an agitated manner does NOT make a film look any more "real", nor does it make a mockumentary look any less contrived. This pile of nonsense is completely unwatchable, so don't even bother.
  • As the USA enjoys another Fourth of July celebration, grumpy aliens stage another "Independence Day" attack. The President of France is dead, but airborne US President Tom Everett Scott (as Sam Garcette) is only shot down. It's an immediate, full-scale invasion and the aliens are "chewing their way out of the ground." This is why their spaceships look screwy. Leading the resistance for Earth is the US President's brother Ryan Merriman (as Pete). He stops his fire truck to pick-up smart blonde Emily Holmes (as Celia Lehman). She works for S.E.T.I. (the Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence)...

    Hanging around to look hot for the viewers are handsome Presidential son Keenan Tracey (as Andrew) and his sexy blonde girlfriend Eliza Andrea Brooks (as Eliza). There doesn't seem to be much of a story here, although Ms. Holmes' character offers a sketchy version of what may be happening. Characterization is mostly given to the three Garcette men. The ending suggests a sequel is possible. Could be we'll learn more about all of this if and when that happens. Mainly, "Independence Day-Saster" looks like good practice for director W.D. Hogan and a grateful cast. It has that "shaky camera" look.

    **** Independence Day-Saster (6/27/13) W.D. Hogan ~ Ryan Merriman, Tom Everett Scott, Keenan Tracey, Emily Holmes
  • This is a cheap Canadian made-for-TV alien-invasion movie. It's cheesy and filled with clichés and cheap CGI effects.

    As indicated in the camp title, it borrows heavily from similar Hollywood blockbusters. ("America under attack...on the fourth of July!") As in all these movies, we follow only the President and his family (and no one else), nerds play a big role, the government officials argue endlessly ("With all due respect, we don't have time!") and the women and girls are there primarily to be annoying.

    However, it's not really that bad for all that. The alien drill-ships are sort of cool. There are a lot of explosions and alien ships whizzing around. This movie is worth about a 5.

    Ryan Merriman (playing a fireman who ran into a SETI chick who had a machine that could stop the aliens) seems to be the stalwart hero of the film. As decent eye candy and a fairly good actor, he helped the movie's overall watchability. Tom Everett Scott (playing the president) and his son weren't bad either.

    You see a lot of these movies on SyFy. I wish they would show decent programming, rather than new cr*p like this. How expensive can it be to show Star Trek re-runs?
  • When Earth is attacked by a hostile alien force, a small town firefighter and a rogue SETI scientist team up to activate the only technology capable of defeating the invaders.

    By now, you should have it figured out how SyFy works when it comes to movies. You have an end-of-the-world scenario, throw in some scientific jargon that may or may not be entirely accurate... then, somehow, amateurs get involved with a brilliant scientific idea...

    Does anyone else find it ironic that the film was made in Canada but is about the American independence day? With so many films being made in Canada it might not be strange, but struck me as odd. And why are they making a riff on "Independence Day" about twenty years too late? Very timely, folks.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    INDEPENDENCE DAYSASTER is another cheapie sci fi movie that comes to us courtesy of the SyFy Channel. It was made in Canada, which comes as no surprise, and rather than being a straight rip-off of INDEPENDENCE DAY (leave that to The Asylum), this is instead a generic alien invasion movie about Earth being invaded by flying ships and weird spinning metal saucers. Oh, and some stuff comes out of the ground too, after lying dormant for many years.

    It's a fast-paced bit of film-making for sure, but that doesn't make it any good, just perhaps not quite as bad as some I've seen. The cast of uninteresting characters are led by an actor from FINAL DESTINATION 3 and another actor from AN American WEREWOLF IN Paris. Some pedigree. There's a multitude of CGI effects here and they're not as bad as some I've seen, although hardly the stuff of greatness.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Wow, what a spectacular movie. Held me in breathless suspense for two hours. I was hoping, hoping, hoping that Andrea Brooks would end up using her shirt as a tourniquet. Almost, but not quite! But seriously, I just finished watching this on Independence Day 2019, and found it to be a decent enough action movie that only borrowed extensively from a few dozen other movies. The yo-yo like devices that act as weapons of destruction were too similar to the same-type things in Battleship, while the whole "Hackers Save The World" vibe has been done a few times already. And every action scene looked like a youtube video done by teenagers with CGI from Atari. And the missiles used to destroy the mother ship look like the ones we had as civil defense in the 1960's. At least the President's "Happy Fourth of July" speech at the end was not terribly reminiscent from the namesake source blockbuster. Oh well.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    This is a made for TV SyFy original. When the President (Tom Everett Scott) gets shot down, he survives to team up with some computer hackers, a fireman, and a SETI scientist to save the world with great dialog like:

    President: "I'm President Sam Garcette and I need your to help to save the world." Hacker: "Okay."

    The film is similar to the one it sounds like, only made cheaper and is less fun. The special effects is what is expected for SyFy. Only the SETI scientist with a modified speaker from a Deep Purple concert can kill the aliens...that and some thermonuclear devices.

    You might want to skip this one.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    It's early afternoon on the Fourth of July. You've already grilled out and ate lunch with the family. While you were going in and out of the house, you watched the one movie that is an absolute must for the holiday. Everyone knows "Independence Day" is required viewing on this great patriotic day of celebration. What do you do after the credits roll on Roland Emmerich's blockbuster gem? Anchor Bay and SyFy Channel answer that nagging question with their release of "Independence Daysaster."

    An alien invasion strikes the Earth from above and below on the birthday of the United States. The President (Tom Everett Scott) is on his way to his hometown festivities when his helicopter is knocked out of the sky by one of the intergalactic enemy's ships. After meeting up with his son and a group of survivors, he must lead them to safety and discover a way to stop the imminent destruction of the entire planet.

    "Independence Daysaster" is a combination of every alien invasion film you've ever seen. They come from the sky and under the Earth just like in "War of the Worlds." We discover their goal is to wipe out humanity and terraforming the planet like in "The Arrival." I think the description above makes it obvious how it compares to "Independence Day." If you're wondering if there's anything original about the film at all, I give you a resounding "no."

    The good thing about "Independence Daysaster" is that it's clean fun for the whole family. There's no over-the-top gore or bloodshed. People get smashed and sucked up, but there are never any graphic mutilations or decapitations seen on screen. It's just old-fashioned PG-rated disaster movie mayhem and relatively inoffensive as far as language is concerned.

    The cast of "Independence Daysaster" is made up of familiar TV stars and supporting actors. Tom Everett Scott is present from "That Thing You Do" and "An American Werewolf in Paris." Andrea Brooks of "Supernatural" plays a teenager in love with physics. "Pretty Little Liars" villain Ryan Merriman gets to embrace the good as a heroic fireman.

    Notice I didn't use the descriptive word "good" before "clean fun" or "old-fashioned?" That's because I wouldn't consider this flick to be necessarily good either as an actual feature film or a "so-bad-it's- good" B-movie. It takes itself way too seriously to be lampooned and isn't engaging enough to hold your attention past the casual look up every minute or so while flipping through Facebook on your cell phone. However, "Independence Daysaster" can provide some light entertainment if you're looking for something to help pass the time between lunch and dinner or before heading out to watch fireworks.
  • SanteeFats29 June 2013
    Warning: Spoilers
    This a good movie for the SyFy channel. It actually has a viable plot and decent acting. The a-hole playing the vice president does a good job as a subordinate who all of a sudden gets ultimate power and abuses it. The president manages to survive the initial alien attacks and surprise, surprise hooks up with not only his brother and son but the only cyber geeks that can help the USA and of course the world in general. The movie is watchable and I found it entertaining enough to watch to the end, not always an option with me and SyFy channel movies. You have the SETI scientist who has the answer to the alien invasion but she also gives her self up for the good of earth. There is the end of the movie that shows a lot of alien ships moving in on the earth so I guess they are hoping for a sequel. Unless it occurs decades in the future I do not think it is viable. I mean the USA used up most if not all their ICBM's and the jet fighters were pretty much wiped out. So not much in the way of defense for at least the USA.
  • Turned on and first sceen I saw was a helicopter taking off in front of a backdrop of the White House. Story line must have been written by a child. I don't understand why Canada has such terrible movies. Not all are terrible but this one takes the cake.
  • I hate this movie alot if feels like battleship shredders on steroids and i know Canadian movie but its terrible i love independence day when i was a kid best movie of all time my favorite one of all. but this its terrible dont watch it.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Don't bother watching even one minute of this trash.

    It is a horrid attempt at sci-fi, using the lowest-calibre actors, a bad script, abysmal cinematography... even the music is bad and inappropriate (and far too loud).

    To put the movie out using this title is criminal, imho. Any association with the classic "Independence Day" is thoroughly lamentable. The producers should be ashamed of themselves.

    The hand-held camera technique is shown here at its worst, much like home movies of the 50s and 60s.

    Thank goodness I didn't pay to watch this crud: the movie was on TV Christmas Eve.
  • As a long time fan of disaster movies, even the not so great ones, I wasn't sure what to expect from this one.I thought it was probably a take-off of Will Smith's famous Independence Day. I just bought this copy today and have already watched it twice. It of course, does not compare to the original nor do I think it is supposed to. I actually kind of like it. The actors do a pretty good job. I was never bored and never thought about turning it off. So, that says a lot to me. If you are entertained, then the movie has served its purpose. I was, so it did. I hope you give it a real chance and appreciate it for what it is meant to be.
  • Gifted director W.D. Hogan does an absolutely beautiful job of helming this incredible film and turns in what is nothing less than a powerful cautionary tale of the value of teamwork during an alien invasion. He works from an imaginative and insightful script by Sydney Roper and Rudy Thauberger that certainly delivers thrills but also an important message. The special effects by Scott Mckay are at times stunning and will leave the viewer wondering how exactly they could possibly do that. All this is given a fantastic assist with pulse pounding score by Michael Neilson and it's music you won't soon forget. Standout performances are given by Andrea Brooks, Emily Holmes, and Ryan Merriman. They give a depth to their characters and one could easily feel their fear and determination. Ms. Holmes is particularly effective and she gives what is possibly the performance of a lifetime. Veteran actor Tom Everett Scott is masterful in his role as President of the United States, portraying convincingly a man under siege and overwhelmed at times by his responsibility to humanity. This is a film that accomplishes what others so often have tried and it does it on a minimal budget. Creativity, imagination, and insight into the human condition make this a truly fine science fiction film by also something much, much more. You will not watch Independence Daysaster and remain unchanged by the experience.