Saturday, July 26, 2008

"The X-Files: I Want to Believe"

I had thought my first entertainment-related post would be about "Lost".

But I've just seen "The X-Files: I Want to Believe" and liked it--certainly more than most professional critics did--and wanted to share a few thoughts.

I enjoy good sci-fi, and was disappointed that the X-Files TV series had lost heart in its final years. This movie brings an excellent revival of the relationship between the Scully and Mulder characters.

Both of them have grown, but it's Scully's inner struggles that we explore here. I don't know if this movie will resonate for those who weren't engaged in the story lines that developed the pair's relationship or delved into their inner lives. There's nothing in this movie that "blows up real good"--they didn't feel obliged to go for summer blockbuster special effects. In many ways this movie is more of a cousin to the "Prime Suspect" TV series starring Helen Mirren. (But yes, it is a monster-of-the-week story, too.)

What it does accomplish is to revive these characters so that fans can care about them again. I don't know if the box office profits will be enough to justify another sequel--reviews have been mixed at best--but the movie lays the foundation for telling Scully and Mulder's stories again. Rejoining the main story arc--aliens: "the truth is out there"--someday will be more satisfying as a result. If it doesn't happen on the big screen, perhaps a limited series on HBO would be a better home.

Footnote: I delayed reading any reviews until after seeing the movie and writing this post. Here are links to two reviews I came across afterward and enjoyed. The X-Files: I Want to Believe (review)

Rebecca Traister on Dana Scully in "The X-Files" | Salon Arts & Entertainment


Matt H said...

Tell me you have seen Batman already because no one would go see X-FILES before Batman!!!!

Bob Mayo said...

Yes, Matt, I saw Batman the weekend before. I wasn't inspired to post about it because -- unlike X-Files -- there was no shortage of positive comments about it out there. I wouldn't have missed Heath Ledger's performance. It's powerful and impressive and he carries the movie which is, nonetheless, depressing. I look forward to seeing it again when it's released on DVD.

Matt H said...

OK...I was starting to worry about ya for a second.

I'm running for school board in the spring :)