The X Files

The X Files


Reviewed by: Angus Wolfe Murray

Conspiracy theories, hidden agendas, alien life-forms, the resurrection of a 37,000-year-old bacteria and Scully iced in a bottle is only a taste of what's in store. You don't have to know who Mulder and Scully are to appreciate the paranormal and little green crawlies.

The first feature film to emerge from the cult TV series has had thought and money spent on it. The story pulsates with possibility and sails straight over the top into a serious situation. "The impossible scenario we never plotted for?" a nervous thinktankster says. "Well, we better come up with a plan."

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Something's lose on earth, something terrifying, and FBI agent Mulder (David Duchovny), with the assistance of doctor manque, FBI agentess Scully (Gillian Anderson), is two or three steps ahead of the field. This may be an end-of-the-world run through, with cultured bees that sting viral venom and an sub-glacial HQ in the wastes of Antarctica. It may be an alien colonisation on the lines of "Invasion Of The Jellybean Microbes", or a mad scientist's day at the office. A man in sensible shoes says, "We are way past the point of common sense here." Too true.

Despite having worked as a team since before sexual politics became the force it is now, Duchovny and Anderson have not grown stale together. There's talk of Scully losing her job and Mulder being unable to function alone. It's almost sentimental. Such moments are rare. Personal bonding's for the bees. What matters is retaining the integrity of the series and not allowing Duchovny's libido to affect Mulder's vow of celibacy. Anderson wears a frown. She looks concerned, as if contemplating suicide, but is sexy enough to make you send a pigeon: DON'T DO IT. Duchovny lays back into a touch-me-and-you're-toast style. "We've got two choices," Mulder says. "One of them's wrong." He takes the third.

The effects are fun, the script is sharp and suspension of disbelief encouraged. It works as a sci-fi thriller-mystery. Mulder and Scully's personal runaround only adds to the sum of its other two sides. If you don't own a TV, you'll still enjoy. If you're an alien, report to base immediately. There's been a leak. As the man says, "The X Files have been reopened."

Reviewed on: 19 Jan 2001
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Feature-length outing for Mulder and Scully.
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Director: Rob Bowman

Writer: Chris Carter, Frank Spotnitz

Starring: David Duchovny, Gillian Anderson, John Neville, William B. Davis, Martin Landau, Mitch Pileggi, Jeffrey DeMunn, Blythe Danner, Terry O'Quinn, Armin Mueller-Stahl, Lucas Black

Year: 1998

Runtime: 100 minutes

BBFC: 15 - Age Restricted

Country: US


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