The X-Files: I Want to Believe

Theatrical Release: July 25, 2008
The X-Files: I Want to Believe


THE X-FILES(TM): I WANT TO BELIEVE is a new motion picture based on the phenomenally popular, award-winning series The X-Files. Long-anticipated, the film reunites series stars David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson under the direction of series creator Chris Carter, who co-wrote the screenplay with Frank Spotnitz.

In grand The X-Files tradition, the film’s storyline is being kept under wraps, known only to top studio brass and the project’s principal actors and filmmakers. This much can be revealed: The supernatural thriller is a stand-alone story in the tradition of some of the show’s most acclaimed and beloved episodes, and takes the always-complicated relationship between Fox Mulder (Duchovny) and Dana Scully (Anderson) in unexpected directions. Mulder continues his unshakable quest for the truth, and Scully, the passionate, ferociously intelligent physician, remains inextricably tied to Mulder’s pursuits.

Months after shooting had wrapped, Carter remained as circumspect about the story as he was during its development and production. “Mulder and Scully are drawn back into the world of the X-Files by a case,” is all he’ll add about the plot.

Perhaps more clues…to something….can be found in the film’s title. “I Want to Believe” is a familiar phrase for fans of the series; it was the slogan on a poster that Mulder had hanging in his office at the FBI. “It’s a natural title,” says Chris Carter. “It’s a story that involves the difficulties in mediating faith and science. It really does suggest Mulder’s struggle with his faith.”

Dove Review

Fox Mulder (David Duchovny) is called upon by old partner Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson) to try to locate an abducted agent. A psychic priest claims to be able to help but Scully initially wants nothing to do with him due to his background as a pedophile. As the plot unfolds the question becomes whether this priest who cries bloody tears has a genuine ability or is simply attempting to deceive them. This film deals with a lot of issues, such as the failure of Catholic priests, and the controversial topic of stem cell research. It also deals with the topic of forgiveness which is nice to see in a film. Unfortunately, it goes off in a lot of directions, and although it kept my attention, a trip to the restroom would have totally placed a viewer in the dark.

Unfortunately too, is the use of strong language and the violence levels, in addition to implied sex between an unmarried couple and the controversial topics. These issues prevent us from awarding our Dove “Family-Approved” Seal to this picture as a family-friendly film.

Content Description

Faith: None
Integrity: None
Sex: An unmarried couple sleep together and there is implied sex; kissing.
Language: J-1; H-3; A-4; G/OMG-2; S-3; Slang for testicles-1; A woman wears a cross but says she is angry with God and has just cursed him.
Violence: Some violent images including severed body parts seen with blood; woman's face seen under ice; operation on a living person; a character purposely rams other vehicles; a man attempts to kill a character with an ax. a woman is kept in an animal cage; photos of severed dog heads; a police officer is killed.
Drugs: Smoking and drinking in a few scenes; woman drugged by criminal.
Nudity: Shirtless man; woman seen bathing in swimming suit in a pool.
Other: A Catholic priest with a pedophile record says he is psychic and this ability is left up to the audience to determine whether or not it's genuine; a character cries bloody tears; frightening images of woman in hiding; during surgery a body part is removed and briefly seen; a boy who is dying and the theme of whether or not to perform more surgery; stem cell research is mentioned; experimental surgeries have been performed on both humans and dogs; a man attempts to save his gay lover.


Company: 20th Century Fox
Writer: Frank Spotnitz and Chris Carter
Director: Chris Carter
Producer: Frank Spotnitz
Genre: Science-Fiction
Runtime: 104 min.
Starring: David Duchovny, Gillian Anderson, Amanda Peet
Reviewer: Edwin L. Carpenter