Latest Movie News Headlines

Face-Off: Independence Day vs. Armageddon

07.03.2014by: Dave Davis
Last week's Face-Off column put a pair of modern action directors against each other, and you gave a slight edge to the style of Zack Snyder over disaster-master Michael Bay.

This weekend is the Fourth of July, generally one of the biggest weekends of the year for the North American box office. To celebrate the holiday, lets take a look at a couple of fireworks-filled patriotic blockbusters that helped turn the 4th into a huge moviegoing weekend: INDEPENDENCE DAY and ARMAGEDDON.

(Please note: Face Off is an opinion column. We're not using any actual science to prove or disprove anything. It's just for fun.)
CAST
Will Smith, Bill Pullman, Jeff Goldblum, Mary McDonnell, Robert Loggia, Judd Hirsch, Randy Quaid, Vivica A. Fox, James Rebhorn, Harvey Fierstein, Adam Baldwin, Brent Spiner, Margaret Colin, Harry Connick Jr.
Bruce Willis, Ben Affleck, Billy Bob Thornton, Steve Buscemi, Owen Wilson, William Fichtner, Liv Tyler, Will Patton, Michael Clarke Duncan, Peter Stormare, Keith David, Jason Isaacs
THREAT
Hostile extraterrestrials in city-sized spaceships invade Earth, and it's up to a ragtag group of survivors to save the world
A gargantuan "global killer" asteroid is on a collision course with Earth, and it's up to a ragtag group of oil drillers to save the world
PROPOSED SOLUTION
Sneak into the alien mothership and use a magical Macintosh to upload a virus that will deactivate the shields of all destroyer ships and fighter craft
Land on the asteroid, drill 800 meters into its surface and plant a nuclear bomb that will split the asteroid in half and nudge the pieces past the planet
PRESIDENT
President Whitmore (Bill Pullman), who gives a memorably rousing speech and then hops into an F/A-18 Hornet jet to personally engage the enemy fighters
Unnamed President (character actor Stanley Anderson), who frets over the size of the approaching asteroid, and later gives a stirring televised speech addressing the country’s courage and potential demise
LANDMARKS DESTROYED
Empire State Building (New York City), Capitol Records Building (Los Angeles), US Bank Tower (Los Angeles), White House (Washington DC)

(Note that some international cuts featured news footage of attacks on various cities around the world)
Chrysler Building (New York City), Grand Central Terminal (New York City), Eiffel Tower (Paris, France), Shanghai (China)
GOVERNMENT SECRET
Area 51, an operational underground military blacksite containing an alien scout craft and its passengers
X-71 experimental military Space Shuttles codenamed Freedom and Independence (of course)
INTERNATIONAL ASSISTANCE
Zilch. Apparently everyone else in the world is sitting around waiting for Americans to figure out an effective method to defeat the aliens
Only if you count Russian cosmonaut Lev (Peter Stormare), who gets the Shuttle engine started in the nick of time by whacking it
SACRIFICIAL HERO
Randy Quaid pilots his jet and malfunctioning missile into the super ray gun of the looming alien destroyer ship
Bruce Willis stays behind on the asteroid to manually detonate the nuke at the last minute and save the world
DIRECTOR
Roland Emmerich, who would later demolish chunks of the planet again in THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW, 2012, GODZILLA and WHITE HOUSE DOWN
Michael Bay, who continued down the path of grand-scale destruction and became the Golden Boy of the July 4th weekend with the TRANSFORMERS series
BOX OFFICE
$817.4 million worldwide
$553.7 million worldwide
INDEPENDENCE DAY
Both INDEPENDENCE DAY and ARMAGEDDON are prime examples of the modern summer blockbuster: big, loud and "accessible" (i.e., kind of dumb). ARMAGEDDON definitely put director Michael Bay on the path to bigger, louder and dumber (and increasingly jingoistic), but it also served as the catalyst that cemented him as a go-to guy for gigantic combustible July 4th releases.

But it was INDEPENDENCE DAY that really launched the trend of "event" movies and it remains an enduring July 4th fave, thanks in part to Whitmore’s spirited speech and unforgettable imagery like the destroyer ships' arrival and that amazing White House explosion. (Arguably, the most memorable thing in ARMAGEDDON is Ben Affleck using animal crackers to get in Liv Tyler's pants while her father sings on the soundtrack.)

Whatever your preference, both movies emphasize an America that can resolve any problem, regardless of how massive or ridiculous. Usually by blowing it up. USA! USA! USA!

Agree? Disagree? Which do you prefer?
POST YOUR CHOICE BELOW!

MORE FUN FROM AROUND THE WEB

8:45PM on 07/03/2014

Armageddon

They're both incredibly fun Sci-Fi blockbusters of utter entertainment but only one has Steve Buscemi getting something called "Space Dimentia" and also made my dad cry like a bitch at the end of it.

So +1 Armageddon
They're both incredibly fun Sci-Fi blockbusters of utter entertainment but only one has Steve Buscemi getting something called "Space Dimentia" and also made my dad cry like a bitch at the end of it.

So +1 Armageddon
Your Reply:



1:38PM on 07/03/2014

Independence Day

If we're looking at similar movies, why wasn't this Armageddon vs. Deep Impact?
Anyway, Independence Day is a better movie than either of those. That scene in Armageddon where Willis says something like "Let's disarm this bomb." Even someone as seasoned as he couldn't sell such a terrible script.
If we're looking at similar movies, why wasn't this Armageddon vs. Deep Impact?
Anyway, Independence Day is a better movie than either of those. That scene in Armageddon where Willis says something like "Let's disarm this bomb." Even someone as seasoned as he couldn't sell such a terrible script.
Your Reply:



3:15PM on 07/03/2014
this is movies that were released on July 4th weekend
this is movies that were released on July 4th weekend
3:14PM on 07/03/2014
I would like to see those Faceoff's. Armageddon vs. Deep Impact. The Prestige vs. The Illusionist. Volcano vs. Dantes Peak. Tombstone vs. Wyatt Earp. I could go on all day.
I would like to see those Faceoff's. Armageddon vs. Deep Impact. The Prestige vs. The Illusionist. Volcano vs. Dantes Peak. Tombstone vs. Wyatt Earp. I could go on all day.
1:28PM on 07/03/2014

Did I miss something?

Why were Kaley Cuoco & Olivia Munn Pictured on the link?
Why were Kaley Cuoco & Olivia Munn Pictured on the link?
Your Reply:



+0
11:10AM on 07/03/2014

INDEPENDENCE DAY.

I gave both movies a 5/10, so I'm going by the general consensus. That movie got 60% and ARMAGEDDON got 40%.
I gave both movies a 5/10, so I'm going by the general consensus. That movie got 60% and ARMAGEDDON got 40%.
Your Reply:



+0
11:10AM on 07/03/2014
God I hate Armageddon. Hated it when I saw it in the theater, still hate to this day. Why? That god awful animal crackers scene! ID4 is pretty damn good and still is watchable to this day.
God I hate Armageddon. Hated it when I saw it in the theater, still hate to this day. Why? That god awful animal crackers scene! ID4 is pretty damn good and still is watchable to this day.
Your Reply:



2:48PM on 07/04/2014
Yes HooiserHorror, I agree.I would bet on that also. He should because it is one of the worse scenes ever put on film!
Yes HooiserHorror, I agree.I would bet on that also. He should because it is one of the worse scenes ever put on film!
11:50AM on 07/03/2014
the animal crackers scene is absolutely unbearable. i bet affleck refuses to acknowledge its existence.
the animal crackers scene is absolutely unbearable. i bet affleck refuses to acknowledge its existence.
+1
9:37AM on 07/03/2014

ID4

Welcome to Earf!
Welcome to Earf!
Your Reply:



9:19AM on 07/03/2014

Randy Quaid

ID4: Cousin Eddie saves the world!
ID4: Cousin Eddie saves the world!
Your Reply:



8:57AM on 07/03/2014

ID4

And it's not even close. Love this movie and while the effects look cheesy now, they blew my mind as a kid. I still enjoy the hell out of this movie. My second favorite Emmerich movie after The Patriot. However, I only enjoy about four or five of his films.
And it's not even close. Love this movie and while the effects look cheesy now, they blew my mind as a kid. I still enjoy the hell out of this movie. My second favorite Emmerich movie after The Patriot. However, I only enjoy about four or five of his films.
Your Reply:



8:54AM on 07/03/2014
I liked them both but I liked ID4 better.
I liked them both but I liked ID4 better.
Your Reply:



8:16AM on 07/03/2014
I'd rather rewatch ID4 than Armageddon - I think it has more longevity as a cheesy action film.
I'd rather rewatch ID4 than Armageddon - I think it has more longevity as a cheesy action film.
Your Reply:



7:46AM on 07/03/2014
Well, what do you know, FaceOff steps it up this week. ID4 is the superior film. Its very quotable (even today), the alien design was great, the virus solution is much more believable than drilling and dropping a nuke, and the White House blowing up is iconic. While I agree also that Armageddon probably has the better cast all around, ID4 does include some very underused gems IMO such as Randy Quaid (I know you fools teared up the first time he flew his plane into the alien ship), Jeff
Well, what do you know, FaceOff steps it up this week. ID4 is the superior film. Its very quotable (even today), the alien design was great, the virus solution is much more believable than drilling and dropping a nuke, and the White House blowing up is iconic. While I agree also that Armageddon probably has the better cast all around, ID4 does include some very underused gems IMO such as Randy Quaid (I know you fools teared up the first time he flew his plane into the alien ship), Jeff Goldblum, Harry Connick Jr., Vivica Fox, and Pullman was a great Prez.
Your Reply:



7:29AM on 07/03/2014
Both movies suffer from the test of time Independence Day suffers more.

Bay IMO has never directed a movie on par with 10,000 BC and 2012 in terms of pure cinema garbage. My hate for Roland makes me vote in favor of Armagedon.

And for the record I am not a Bay fan and hate all the Transformers.
Both movies suffer from the test of time Independence Day suffers more.

Bay IMO has never directed a movie on par with 10,000 BC and 2012 in terms of pure cinema garbage. My hate for Roland makes me vote in favor of Armagedon.

And for the record I am not a Bay fan and hate all the Transformers.
Your Reply:



+1
6:33AM on 07/03/2014
Landmarks destroyed? In ID4, don't mention the buildings, mention the whole cities!

BTW, ID4 is superior!
Landmarks destroyed? In ID4, don't mention the buildings, mention the whole cities!

BTW, ID4 is superior!
Your Reply:



3:30AM on 07/03/2014
Independence Day for me, mainly because of Jeff Goldblum.
Independence Day for me, mainly because of Jeff Goldblum.
Your Reply:



2:12AM on 07/03/2014
Remember when an "event movie" ment something? Good times...
Remember when an "event movie" ment something? Good times...
Your Reply:



1:54AM on 07/03/2014
Armageddon.It`s 100% summer blockbuster.Plus the dvd commentary is one of the best ever.Ben affleck says"How do they know He`s the best oil driller in the world? It`s like saying he`s the best cappuccino maker in the world." plus Bay admits they only added the gun on the driller machines they use because the studio was told by the toy company they would sell more toys if they added a machine gun.Also very quotable is this movie,"This place is like Dr. Seuss's worst nightmare!"It`s faster to
Armageddon.It`s 100% summer blockbuster.Plus the dvd commentary is one of the best ever.Ben affleck says"How do they know He`s the best oil driller in the world? It`s like saying he`s the best cappuccino maker in the world." plus Bay admits they only added the gun on the driller machines they use because the studio was told by the toy company they would sell more toys if they added a machine gun.Also very quotable is this movie,"This place is like Dr. Seuss's worst nightmare!"It`s faster to teach oil drillers how to work in space then spacemen how to use a drill in space lol,Yeah, this movie is awesome summer popcorn value.
Your Reply:



1:52AM on 07/03/2014
Good idea for a face off, I often group these two films together. Independence Day wins for me. The moral of Armageddon is that dumb = good. It is easier to train oil rig workers to become astronauts than the other way around, and it's the brash blue collar dudes who save the day while the nerds are useless. Far be it from me to disparage hard work but yeah, that's a stretch. That the movie runs with this premise and leaps off the cliff with it while yelling "FREEDOM!" makes it all the more
Good idea for a face off, I often group these two films together. Independence Day wins for me. The moral of Armageddon is that dumb = good. It is easier to train oil rig workers to become astronauts than the other way around, and it's the brash blue collar dudes who save the day while the nerds are useless. Far be it from me to disparage hard work but yeah, that's a stretch. That the movie runs with this premise and leaps off the cliff with it while yelling "FREEDOM!" makes it all the more enjoyable. Independence Day is silly for sure, but less obnoxiously silly than Armageddon. Independence Day also wins out on the spectacle front - Armageddon had a meteor fragment obliterate Paris, but nothing beats the destruction of the White House by way of alien death ray.
Your Reply:



1:49AM on 07/03/2014

Is this a FACE-OFF of which movie is shittier?

Independence Day wins for that, but not by much.
Independence Day wins for that, but not by much.
Your Reply:



Latest Entertainment News Headlines


Top
Loading...

Featured Youtube Videos

Views and Counting

Movie Hottie Of The Week

More