It's the big alien invasion blockbuster that's flying into cinemas this week, but the sequel to 1996's Independence Day isn't a hit with critics.

The film, a follow-up to the Will Smith-starring original in which aliens attack Earth, features Liam Hemsworth and Jeff Goldblum, and is billed as a much bigger, all-out action film where the stakes are higher.

But review embargoes broke overnight and reviewers let rip, criticising Roland Emmerich's latest effort for being "lazy" and "borderline nonsensical".

"Resurgence inflates the scale of the alien threat to such a preposterous degree - the mothership takes up roughly an eighth of the Earth's total surface - that the queues of honking traffic and rooftop helicopter rescues we're supposed to invest in can't help but feel like microscopic trifles," wrote The Telegraph.


"Joyless and tedious, a reboot quite without the first film's audacity and fun ...

"It's a movie that is going through the intergalactic motions," said The Guardian.

And TimeOut London had this to say: "It's all too much too fast, and the cumulative effect is like watching a two-hour trailer - more dizzying than thrilling."

But Empire was more positive, saying you might even forget the star from the first film is missing.

"As spectacular as you'd hope from a sequel to the 1996 planet-toaster, and as amusingly cheesy. You'll enjoy yourself enough that you won't even miss Will Smith."

The film has a 49 per cent approval rating on Metacritic, and 55 per cent on Rotten Tomatoes.

Independence Day: Resurgence hits New Zealand theatres tomorrow.