So I had a chance to see the new X-Files movie recently and I'm telling you, this movie is much, much better than people are making it out to be. Now, I'm a die hard X-Phile so I may be a bit biased, but I thought it was pretty damn good. The story was straightforward, it had a nice creepy vibe to it, there were a ton of nods to fans of the show, but most importantly, Duchovny and Anderson just did fantastic jobs with their portrayals of Mulder and Scully.
Maybe I was just really happy to see them back on the screen again after so long away. I don't know. Back when Linda and I lived in upstate New York, watching The X-Files on Friday nights was a huge deal. We had another couple we were really good friends with and we'd switch off whose house we'd go to to have dinner, play some games and then watch the show. Those nights were some of the best nights I can remember. We always had a really, really good time. Henry was a puppy at the time and our friends had an older Lhasa mix and the dogs would always play together when everyone was at our house. When we went to their house, Yin and Yang, the two cats would usually spend the evening beating up on Henry while he tried to make friends with them. Once the show started, everyone would hush up and we'd all get scared together, or laugh together or say "what the fuck was that" together. If you could call a tv show a friend, or a companion, then in this case, on these evenings, The X-Files was just that.
Watching the movie brought a lot of that back, but my enjoyment was more than just from reminiscing. Mulder and Scully have moved on from their jobs in the FBI and the characters show that. The problems arise when Scully asks Mulder to get back involved, just to debunk a psychic, and in typical Mulder fashion, once he realizes that there's no debunking to be done, he's in with both feet. The conversations that ensue were so well done because if you've been in a relationship for some time, you know that you don't have a lot of fights, you just have the same fight over and over, and these characters have had this fight before. Scully doesn't want to get pulled in, but Mulder can't help it. He's already there. Furthermore, he's there because Scully asked him to be there. He can't understand why she doesn't want to come with him when it was her idea, and she can't make him understand that she wanted him to only go so far, not all the way. It's amazing to me that they could craft a conversation and a conflict like this, one that seems so grounded and realistic, and place it in a movie with missing FBI agents and shadowy medical experiments and not have it sound stupid or corny.
I'm sure that those who don't know the show, or weren't huge fans, won't find much to like here, and hell, I realize that I liked the show more than most, so I probably liked the movie more than most, but I don't care. I thought it was great and I can't wait for it to come out on DVD so that I can buy it, unlike the original movie which has been on my wish list, unpurchased, for years now. Now that we've moved away and had kids, Linda and don't have friends like we did when we watched the show, and in fact, haven't really kept up with couple we spent all of those Friday nights with. Seeing Mulder and Scully again, and seeing that there was hope for them, despite their problems, was like seeing old friends, if only for a night. I don't know what's going to happen to them, and I may never see them again, but I know they're ok. Somehow, that's enough.