X-Files: I Want to Believe (15)

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The ViewBirmingham Review

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Review byMatthew Turner30/07/2008

Four out of Five stars
Running time: 104 mins

This is essentially just a bog-standard (if slightly gruesome) thriller, but it's a treat to see Anderson and Duchovny together again and fans of the show won't be disappointed.

What's it all about?
Six years after the series ended (and a decade after the first movie), agents Fox Mulder (David Duchovny) and Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson) make a welcome return to the big screen. It's set a few years after the events in the series finale: Mulder has gone into hiding and has grown a beard, while Scully has left the FBI and is now working as a doctor, where she's troubled by a case involving a terminally ill boy (Marco Niccoli).

However, Mulder is brought out of exile when two FBI Agents (Amanda Peet and Alvin 'Xzibit' Joiner) contact him via Scully and ask for his help in locating an abducted FBI agent. In particular, they want to know if the psychic visions of a convicted paedophile priest (Billy Connolly) are genuine or not, given that he keeps leading them to severed body parts and claims that the missing agent is still alive.

The Good
It's a genuine treat to see these characters on screen again and the chemistry is still strong between Duchovny and Anderson, both of whom give superb performances, even when delivering Carter's clunky dialogue. There's also strong support from Peet, while Connolly turns in an intriguingly complex performance as the is-he-or-isn't-he psychic and Callum Keith Rennie (from Battlestar Galactica) is suitably menacing as the abductor.

The film is impressively shot, with dark, wintry snowscapes adding to the creepy atmosphere. In addition, the script leavens its slightly gruesome plot with moments of dry humour and some good one-liners.

The Bad
The decision to avoid aliens, conspiracies and the show's tortuous mythology was undoubtedly a good one, but the film could still have used a decent set-piece, especially given its blockbuster season release.

Worth seeing?
The X-Files: I Want to Believe is a decent thriller, enlivened by the presence of two of television's most beloved characters. Stick around during the credits for a bizarre final moment.

Film Trailer

X-Files: I Want to Believe (15)
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Content updated: 20/09/2018 23:55

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