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> Independence Day (1996)
Independence Day

Directed by:
Roland Emmerich

Will Smith as Captain Steven "Eagle" Hiller
Bill Pullman as President Thomas J. Whitmore
Jeff Goldblum as David Levinson
Mary McDonnell as First Lady Marilyn Whitmore
Judd Hirsch as Julius Levinson
Robert Loggia as U.S. Space Command General William Grey
Randy Quaid as Russell Casse
Margaret Colin as Constance Spano/Levinson
James Rebhorn as Secretary of Defense Albert Nimzicki
Harvey Fierstein as Marty Gilbert


  • The map of Russia shown in "Sky news" (in Russian), shows the city of St. Petersburg as Petrograd, a name used only from 1914 until 1924 (when it became Leningrad; the original name St. Petersburg was restored in 1991).
  • In the opening shots, the earth is shown in the background of the alien ship.
  • The rotation of the earth is plainly visible, at about 2 or 3 degrees per second, giving an Earth day of about 2 or 3 minutes.
  • During the scene where Levinson argues with Connie, Levinson refills his scotch glass three times without having drunk any of it.
  • Throughout the movie there are F-18s that have United States Air Force painted on the side of them. There are not, nor have there ever been F-18s in the Air Force.
  • As Randy Quaid flies his jet directly into the mother ship, the ship was right on top of base where all the American military leaders were. As he blows up the ship, it falls to the ground. How the hell did the mother ship miss the base? The ship was 15 miles in diameter.
  • After the president wakes up David's wife is reading the news paper and all the colors on the weather map are blue and that means snow and cold weather, but the whole day it's all sunshine. - Bignick
  • When Will Smith is dragging the Alien through the desert, watch the clouds. First they're there, then they're gone. Repeats several times. - FlyBoy
  • As the shadow of the giant ship is moving across D.C., it moves up the Lincoln Memorial. The shadow probably would have moved down considering it's location. It also would move sideways over the White House. - Bob
  • When David and his dad are going to D.C., there is a shot of them in the car showing both of them, dad in the front, David behind. David's door is locked. Then, in the close-up of David, It's unlocked. - Bob
  • When the secretary of defense says "I'm not Jewish", the little boy in the red cap next to him glances at the camera for a second then looks at the floor. - steelflesh
  • When the alien ship glides over the desert site (where the family lives in the mobile home) the shadow of the alien ship is really sharp and precise on the ground, BUT when the camera shows the alien ship it comes flying in and through this huge cloud, like an enormous thunderstorm. How can a cloud like this throw such a shadow? - Chris
  • In the residence of Will Smiths character, his son is getting all exited about aliens outside. In this scene, he has a tash. In the next scene where he goes outside to collect his milk and newspaper, and sees the ship, he doesn't have the tash. When he goes back inside the house to pack his suitcase, his tash magically reappears! - dik_hed
  • When Vivian Fox change clothes at work....well...lets just say have never seen anyone change in a split second! - TheIceQueen
  • When Jeff Goldblum's ex-wife is walking through the halls in the Whitehorse talking to Jeff Goldblum on a cell phone you can see someone on their hands and knees next to her. Looks like a movie crewman to me. - GrantW
  • When the convoy of mobile homes meets Will Smith, who is dragging the alien through the desert, in the background where the mountains meet the desert you will notice regular highway traffic moving in both directions. (Theatre/VHS) - plf3
  • A fire blast inside of a tunnel would suck up all the oxygen. Therefore, disregarding all sense of why Vivica Fox, her son, and the dog weren't burned to a crisp inside the tunnel, they would have surely dropped dead from suffocation. - JohnB
  • Well severel problems with this movie When the young man is riding his motor cycle. Then shadow reverse when changing side as his father passes over in the plane. (VHS/DVD) - Teacherman
  • Well when Goldbloom is coming into the office to with his bike and meets coworker and followed with steadycam. The take your mark tapes show up on the screen when they get close to the desk next to his office. It is a V shaped tape for camera operator to take his mark. If you look close in the office again there is tape on the floor next to the desk for the next camera to pick up the scene. (VHS/DVD) - Teacherman
  • When the space craft is coming over NY. the policeman on horse back turns his horse but the next scene he turns the horse again. Two cameras to pick up the scene from the other side. (VHS/DVD) - Teacherman
  • When the aliens attack the white house, a silver car is droped three times in from different angles and show as if it was a different car. (VHS/DVD) - Teacherman
  • When Jeff is playing chess with his father he is across the Hudson River (as you can see because of the docks) i.e. in New Jersey. When he is on the roof of his office you see central park in the background. It would take him a good 2 hours to get back to his office from the park in New Jersey. The only bike route is across the George Washington Bridge. (VHS) - Dom
  • When the president arrives at Area 51 and demands entrance into the "clean" area, the officer there inserts his key and punches in the security code to open the door. The doors start to open before all the keys are pressed. (DVD) - Talcum X
  • In one scene someone is communicating with some British RAF personnel stationed in Turkey, telling them when to attack the alien ships. In the background is an F-16 with RAF markings on, except the RAF have never and do not now fly the F-16. - Elthrin
  • In the opening scene, the U.S. flag from Apollo is seen standing up. Apollo 11's liftoff blew the flag down - see NASA's official films for confirmation. - david
  • (Errors in geography) In the scene where Air Force One lifts off from Andrews AFB, the firestorm is behind the aircraft. Andrews has 2 runways, and they both run north/south. The fireball would have come from the west, that is to their side, not behind. Therefore, they would not have made it and would have been toasted. - Lanny
  • When Goldblum gets drunk in the underground Area 51, he becomes angry and kicks a bunch of cases and trash cans, one of the overturned cans says "art dept." on the bottom. Wonder if Area 51 has an art department? (VHS) - Flackjacket57
  • (Continuity) After the B 2 bomber has launched the atom-rocket (?) at the alien ship it flies to the left side, but on the radar monitor in the bunker it flies to the right. - Corpsegrind

Debated Goofs

  • Is it just me or do other people find it a bit strange that Vivica A. Fox actually leaves her son and goes to work (as a stripper no less!) when the sky is full of alien spacecrafts. - Larry
    • Comment: I don't know! Maybe. . . possibly. . . a. . . Babysitter! No way! - Cerasi
      • Comment: Hello, Cerasi! I believe what Larry was trying to say is, isn't it strange that a mother (Vivica) would leave her young child at all when these strange ships are about? (Who knows what they might do?) Your quite right Larry - Well done, boy! - mal_movie_man
    • Correction: Pay no attention to the question about Vivica Fox leaving the kid at home! If you go out and get the 2-CD set of ID4 on DVD, you will have the option of seeing the theatrical version, or the Special Edition. The special edition has scenes taken out for the theatre release. One of the scenes is an extension of the Strip Club scene, where Fox goes into another room to get her son and the dog, and later, the boss catches her with the kid, and fires her. So she didn't leave the kid at home! Think about it! She goes straight from the Club to the tunnel in the car! She doesn't go home first!
    • Comment: I have a special edition of Independence Day, and in it, Vivica brings her son to work. He sits in the back with that chick that dies later on. You say she's not a good mother, but she comes backstage to get him and starts to leave, she gets fired for it. Its pretty cool for a mom to give up her job for her kid. - Xena

Commented Goofs

  • In the beginning of the movie the alien-aircrafts manage to make the human footsteps disappear off the moon. How? For there is no air nor wind on the moon.
    • Comment: The moon was shaking as the ship woved or whatever... when something shakes, the stuff on top of it tend to moves as well... and since, yes, there is gravity on the moon, the "moondust" would settle a bit... proof of gravity: whenever a man takes a step he would fly off if there isn't gravity on the moon, and he doesn't, so therefore it is my conclusion that, yes, there is gravity on the moon... also, another factor to look at is what I call the "duh factor".. the duh factor simply says "duh, there's gravity on the moon." - Lando
    • Comment: These aliens do possess a very advanced technology, including anti-gravity devices. If the mothership used artificial gravity for propulsion, the field might affect the dust on the moon, even in vacuum. - Axel
  • They say Apple ain't doing too good, but that can't be true if Mac computers are compatible with computers used on other planets; David Levinson managed to transfer a Mac virus over to the alien computer.
    • Comment: Did it cross your mind that perhaps Mac was a sponsor? Next time you watch the movie, read the credits at the end. At the part where it says "special thanks to" and lists a bunch of name brands that appear in the movie, like Nike or Ford or whatever, I betcha Macintosh is on that list. - KNIGHTSHADE
  • Don't you think a race of aliens capable of building spaceships 15 miles in diameter and flying them unimaginable distances might somewhere, from some other race, (Say--the Swiss?) assimilated the secret of synchronizing watches? - Himitsu
    • Comment: You are forgetting one thing, Himitsu: The aliens were not just using our satellites to synchronize their watches, but also to exchange information and instructions from the mother ship. If they needed to delay or speed up their time frame, they could tell all the other ships to do so instantly. Also you're forgetting that this is how they used the computer virus to drop their shields. If the aliens thought like the Swiss do and did not use our satellites to communicate, we would not have been able to defeat them. - KNIGHTSHADE
  • Comment: Good point, but you could look at it as if the boy happened to be staring in the exact spot the camera was, just because they look at the camera does not necessarily mean they are looking at the actual camera, in film terms they could be staring at the wall behind, the camera does not exact, just a coincidence. If you don't get wot I've put, don't worry, I've confused myself now! - bazza

Corrected Goofs

  • David's father says to Connie on Air Force One: 'All you need is love.' - John Lennon. Smart man. Shot in the back, very sad." Actually John Lennon was not shot in the back. He was shot in the chest.
    • Correction: This is not a goof. John Lennon was shot in the back, twice, with another two bullets hitting his left arm, not one hit his chest. - Gary
  • The size of Will Smith's cigar in the end seemed to of magically become longer about 15 minutes after it is seen almost gone. - Marcus Moon
    • Correction: Who knows maybe he had two of them DA!! - Kaynutz
      • Correction: Captain Hiller (Will Smith) could NOT have had two cigars, as before he and David Levinson (Jeff Goldblum) launched in the alien attack ship, he asked all the people in the room if they had any cigars. David's father, Julius Levinson (Judd Hirsch) passed him two cigars, saying "Take these, my last two". - DigitalAvatar
        • Comment: That is true, he did give him two, but he gave the 2nd one to his partner in the ship...DUH! 1 plus 1 equals 2. They each smoked one only. - bacherz
  • Will Smith and Jeff Goldblum fit comfortably into the cockpit chairs of a craft originally flown by 30' tall aliens. Huh? - billw
    • Correction: Am I missing something or did they do a little work on the ship. - andrew
  • Vivica and her son walk out of the highway tunnel to find everything completely destroyed by the alien weapon. Nothing can't stand the immense power of the weapon except . . . palm trees? They stand untouched amongst all the rubble. hmmmm. - Jack
    • Correction: Palm trees, and any trees for that matter, can take a lot of abuse. I've seen hurricanes blow cities to rubble, but the trees still stand. Even on the footage of the early H-bomb testing, the buildings and vehicles are blown to oblivion, but the trees still stand. This is probably due to their firm, deep rooting and the flexibility of the trunk, which absorbs most of the energy of the blast, just like crumple zones in your car. - Kraken
  • When the first time they go up against the aliens Will Smith (Capt. Steven Hiller) crashes one of the alien spaceships he drags the alien but what about the ship????? They didn't mention at all about it. - KnightShift3:16
    • Correction: Surely the fact that nobody mentions the craft again in the movie should not be considered a 'goof'. - DigitalAvatar


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