|Directed by:||Chris Carter|
|Written by:||Chris Carter, Frank Spotnitz|
|Cast:||David Duchovny, Gillian Anderson, Xzibit, Amanda Peet, Billy Connolly, Callum Keith Rennie, Adam Godley|
After the final scene clipped to black I realized how much I, as a fan of the x-files, had invested in the characters of this franchise. So it was sad to face what will most certainly be that last we see of Mulder & Scully.
An unlikely and fringey TV success, I don't think the x-files was ever destined to be a movie franchise with the pedigree of your modern day titans like Batman, Spider-man and Harry Potter. But through some brilliant writing and excellent on-screen chemistry, it was able to at least make a valiant attempt to transcend its natural life.
The "stand alone" story that drives this x-files tale is no where near big enough to warrant a big screen portrayal. Though it would have made a scrumptious "special Made-for-TV" event, it just can't seriously compete with the intensity of the summer movie releases movie-goers demand.
If you love the characters of x-files and miss the show, then this film will give you one last pleasant taste of the magic it delivered on TV. But to ask it to measure up to Hancock, Batman or Iron Man and other movie blockbusters is an impossible task with this script or, perhaps, even these characters.
There was probably nothing Carter and Spotnitz could have done to bring the x-files environment into an epic altitude short of front loading it with a parade of old characters and revisited perils that would hearken us back to the classic shows. Clyde Bruckman (though Peter Boyle's death makes that scenario impossible) and the Lone Gunmen come back to life as alien slaves... Frank Black makes an appearance, Doggett and Reyes become entangled... and Carey Elwes reprises his role as AD Fullmer in a cinematic x-files Battle Royale... but alas...
If there was any momentum from the show and first movie, it has long since petered out. With loyal fans finally dispersing from their vigil to watch "Bones" or await the next "Star Wars" while the movie making powers scrapped it out for royalties and conducive scheduling. So the chances that "I Want to Believe" would be a Box Office success were immediately diminished to a very, long-ish, long-shot.
To make matters worse, Billy Connolly is stiff and only mildly believable in his roll. His almost absent-minded approach to the character doesn't lend to your acceptance of the story. At times it feels like the movie was less about the bizarre situation Mulder and Scully are in than the personal struggle the two have to understand their role in world... and with each other. In my opinion, Duchovny and Anderson reprise their roles nicely, allowing for the plausibility that the two have evolved and aged mildly over the years.
After 8 seasons, one feature film and several years of fond reminiscences, my emotional investment with these two characters has become considerable - and so I settled back into the "world" with great happiness and comfort. But that is a feeling reserved only for those (like me) who have, for whatever strange reasons, bought into the x-files universe. A shrinking universe... that has now grown too small to survive in the vast expanses of commercial film success.