Meanwhile, the casting of Will Smith’s son Jaden as Helen’s stepson plays like a colossal (and really lame) in-joke. Trained to shoot aliens by hours of playing Halo online, he constantly repeats the mantra, “If my dad were here, he’d fight!” The theme of the movie is that we’re supposed to be better than that, but it’s debatable whether this is a better film than Independence Day, so begging the comparison is a bad idea. But at least it’s an idea.

The Day the Earth Stood Still was directed by Scott Derrickson; written by David Scarpa, based on the 1951 screenplay by Edmund H. North. Opens Fri. Countywide.

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