Saturday, April 18, 2020
"THE X-FILES: I WANT TO BELIEVE" (2008) Review
”THE X-FILES: I WANT TO BELIEVE" (2008) Review
This second "X-FILES" movie, directed by creator Chris Carter, had not been on my list of movies to see this summer. As much as I had enjoyed the first movie, it did not impress me that much. But . . . family members managed to convince me to go see this second movie. Needless to say, I wish I had followed my first instincts.
The plot for "THE X-FILES: I WANT TO BELIEVE" centered around the disappearance of an FBI agent from her home and other women in Virginia. After meeting a psychic former priest (Billy Connolly), who claimed to have visions of the missing woman, the agent in charge of the case - FBI Agent Dakota Whitney (Amanda Peet) – requests for Fox Mulder’s (David Duchovny) help in determining if the psychic is genuine. In exchange for his services, the FBI agrees to drop the trumped up charges against him. Bored with his life as a former agent, Mulder becomes embroiled in the case. Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson) – who is in the middle of a romantic relationship with Mulder - has also left the Bureau and become a surgeon at the Lady of Sorrows Hospital and appears to have had intermittent contact with Fox Mulder. She had been contacted by Special Agent Whitney, who was looking for Fox Mulder to assist them with the investigation of a missing FBI agent. In exchange for his help charges against Mulder were dropped. Serving as the physician to a young boy who is dying of an incurable illness, Scully has a crisis of faith after she discovers a possible form of treatment for the boy, and she is unsure of whether or not to proceed.
Do not get me wrong. The movie’s plot is not badly written at all. It is a good, solid thriller about missing women being used as body parts by Russian-born doctors for some kind of sick science experiment. The problem is that the plot is not what I would not have chosen for an X-FILES movie. A plot centered around aliens or a supernatural phenomenon would have been more appropriate. Instead, the only thing supernatural about this movie is the psychic former priest who had been kicked out of the church for pedophilia. The movie’s plot would have suited a stand-alone episode for "THE X-FILES" television series, or some thriller featuring actors like Julianne Moore, Sigourney Weaver or Wesley Snipes. The subplot featuring Scully’s professional woes slightly bored me, along with the propaganda for stem cell research and gay marriage. Let me get one thing straight. I am a supporter of both issues. I am not a conservative. Nor have I ever voted for a Republican candidate in my life. But Carter’s little stab at George W. Bush, the current President when this movie was made, only left me cringing in my seat, instead of feeling amused. It seemed liked overkill and an example of allowing the message to overwhelm the story.
The performances were pretty solid. I was impressed by Duchovny, Anderson and especially Connolly as the pedophile priest/psychic. I felt sorry for rapper Alvin "Xzibit" Joiner, who found himself saddled with one of the useless and narrow-minded characters in Hollywood history, FBI Special Agent Mosley Drummy. Carter would not even allow his character to develop in face of Father Joe’s (Connolly) successes as a psychic. Instead, he brought back Walter Skinner (Mitch Pileggi) in the movie’s finale to help Scully save Mulder. If I were Joiner, I would sue his agent . . . or Chris Carter.
Nearly twelve years ago, I would have never advised "THE X-FILES: I WANT TO BELIEVE". I still would not. I believe that such advise would be a waste of time. If you are curious about the film, you could always rent it via Netflix or some other method. I wish I had done the same. Instead, I ended up wasting my time and money at the movie theaters.