The X-Files: Fight the Future, Blu-ray (1998)

by | May 18, 2009 | DVD & Blu-ray Video Reviews | 0 comments

The X-Files: Fight the Future, Blu-ray (1998)

Starring: David Duchovny, Gillian Anderson, Martin Landau, Blythe Danner, Armin Mueller-Stahl
Directed by: Rob Bowman

Studio: Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment
Video: 2.35:1 anamorphic/enhanced for 16:9; 1080p color HD
Audio: English DTS-HD 5.1 Master Lossless Audio; French Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround, Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround
Subtitles: English SDH, English, Spanish, Korean, Cantonese, Mandarin
Extras: Original 1999 audio commentary track with creator Chris Carter and director Rob Bowman; new audio commentary track with Chris Carter, Rob Bowman, Frank Spotnitz and Daniel Sackheim; four featurettes (Original 1998 “The Making of The X-Files Movie”, “Blackwood – The Making of The X-Files: Fight the Future”, “Visual Effects” and “Scoring”); three trailers; trailer for “The X-Files: I Want to Believe”; alternate bee-sting scene; still galleries; gag reel; picture-in-picture; D-BOX motion code
Length: 122 minutes
Movie Rating: ****    Video Rating: ***
Audio Rating: ****     D-Box Motion Rating: ****

The first of two feature films inspired by the hit television series, “The X-Files: Fight the Future” finds that Agents Fox Mulder (David Duchovny) and Dana Scully’s (Gillian Anderson) paranormal investigation department of the FBI has been shut down.  The two agents are reassigned to investigate a case involving a domestic terrorism threat.  As the case unfolds, however, Mulder and Scully discover that the terrorism threat is actually part of a far-reaching government conspiracy to hide the existence of extraterrestrials planning an invasion of Earth.

I am a fan of “The X-Files” television series and really enjoyed this movie as well.  While there were a couple of plot holes that could have been better addressed, the film wisely managed to incorporate many of the things that made the series so entertaining (including some romantic tension between Mulder and Scully, cameo appearances by The Lone Gunmen and The Smoking Man, and, of course, aliens).  Familiarity with the TV series is definitely a plus when watching this movie, however, the story is crafted well-enough to make it an enjoyable science-fiction experience for those who have not previously seen the X-Files.  Highly-recommended.  
The high definition video quality of “The X-Files: Fight the Future” is good.  Images are occasionally soft but are otherwise well-detailed.  Black levels are consistently dark throughout the film.  Colors are warm and accurate with nicely-saturated hues.  Other than some film grain, picture defect mastering is fairly solid with no major flaws or compression artifacts.  The overall audio quality is very good with the English DTS 5.1 track.  The soundtrack actively incorporates all of the discrete channels into its mix.  Dialogue is natural sounding and properly positioned in the center channel.  The surround channels are aggressively utilized for the sound effects and music score, plus include several split rear effects.  The low frequency effects channel is very active and puts forth some powerful bass.

“The X-Files: Fight the Future” is compatible with the “D-BOX” Motion Code™ System, meaning that if you have the compatible D-BOX equipment, your movie viewing experience will be enhanced by adding both motion and vibration to your seating.  About twenty percent of this movie has motion effects and/or vibration present.  The range of motion effects varies anywhere from the subtlety of road vibration while driving in a car, to the forceful impact of bomb explosions.  There were several nice D-BOX moments in this movie, notably the office bomb explosion in Chapter 3, car explosion in Chapter 14, Mulder falling through the ice in Chapter 15, multiple explosions in the underground facility in Chapter 16, and the lift-off of the alien craft in Chapter 17.  My favorite D-BOX scene takes place in Chapter 15 as Mulder is exploring the underground facility.  He stumbles and slides down a winding chute before almost falling to his death.  D-BOX incorporated both side-to-side and up-and-down movements with potent vibration into this scene which enabled me to experience the sliding and plummeting sensation.  It was brief but also quite cool.  Overall, I would rate the D-BOX motion/vibration quality for “The X-Files: Fight the Future” as very good.

– Calvin Harding Jr.

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