Tuesday, July 29, 2008

The last last X-FIles post, and boy do I mean it this time!

An interesting Entertainment Weekly article from Whitney Pastorek that gives some more insight on a couple things some of us have been discussing about The X-Files. Chris Carter basically says that the point of the film became the Mulder-Scully relationship.

Spotnitz gets the obfuscation gold star for at one point actually answering a question with, ''Well, the truth, the truth. It's out there. What is the truth?'' Luckily, he expands. ''I think the truth is in Mulder and Scully, these two opposites coming together,'' he says. ''This could be the last time we ever visit this world, and we wanted to say something fundamental about it.''

And ...

In the absence of aliens and conspiracies and brain-crushing mythology, The X-Files: I Want to Believe simply comes down to the joy of watching Mulder and Scully together again. We've been given one more chance to revel in the depth of these characters and their commitment to one another. Along with a lesson in patience, that's what Carter was going for all along. ''I want you to take that relationship and imagine it could be real,'' he says, and he admits something I've always secretly suspected: ''Maybe I'm the original shipper.''

I think both quotes point to the primacy of the relationship in the film. Interesting final quote by Carter, as well. I didn't know this until this past week, but "shipper" is the term for X-Files fans who think that Mulder and Scully should be romantically involved. It's a big point of bloodbath among X-Files fans. Apparently, I was a gradualist shipper all along. Apparently, so was Carter.

One last description of the movie: It's a supernatural Nick and Nora adventure re-imagined by Michelangelo Antonioni and/or Ingmar Bergman, but with a happier ending. Nick and Nora for the bantering couple (or usually so with M&S), with an idle retired investigator, supported by a wealthy spouse, brought back into the job for one case. Antonioni, I've touched on in other posts. Bergman for his metaphysical uncertainties, along with things like the dead child.


Alexander Coleman said...

It definitely has that bleak wintry blast one could sometimes expect to be hit with by Bergman. (Though if you look at many of his films, they are mostly surprisingly sunny and often take place in summer.) Nevertheless, the spiritual and metaphysical grappling in The X-Files: I Want to Believe does recall Bergman. His critics, including Robert Bresson, believed Bergman's films were too talky, too devoted to the exchange of ideas through dialogue. (I'm an enormous Bergman fan but I'll admit like all great directors he wasn't infallible and occasionally some of his films were perhaps excessively talky.) With that in mind, it's interesting to see a lot of folks complain about the talkiness of I Want to Believe (and, correspondingly, the lack of action and special effects).

Did you learn the meaning of "shipper" from me? :)

I was mostly a "no romo," but there were moments--like Mulder embracing Skully and kissing her forehead in Season 4's big episode Memento Mori--that were more romantic than just about anything else you could find. And I dug that.

I'm going to watch The House of Mirth again tonight or tomorrow night for Gillian Anderson.

Craig Kennedy said...

This article is right in line with what you've been saying all along. But then you knew that.

K. Bowen said...

I pieced "shipper" together from a few places, including you, AC.

I should say, when I talk about Bergman or Antonioni, obviously I'm not comparing this film in quality to their masterworks. But fiinding similarities in their interests, etc. Although, maybe it's Kieslowski.:)

K. Bowen said...

And yes, I knew that, Craig. WHy do you think I would post it?

K. Bowen said...