Monday, May 26, 2008

Out there

In anticipation of the "X-Files" movie coming out in July, last night we watched the first cinematic installment of the 1990s' most famously creepy television series this side of "Family Matters." I had already seen the film and much of the series, but Ereck had not, so this seemed a good way to get him up to speed. Turns out the new movie apparently won't continue the celebrated alien-conspiracy storyline of the series and the first film, so perhaps Ereck didn't need the primer.

But I was glad to revisit the movie. It thrilled me when I first saw it at a sleek, gloriously air-conditioned multiplex in Bangkok (before the feature there was a short film about King Bhumibol, and we all rose in respect), and I was a devoted fan of the series thereafter. There's something about the conspiracy storyline that I find deliciously unsettling to this day, the notion that various horrible events -- a virus outbreak, the devastating bombing of a federal office building -- are all the bidding of a group of solemn old white guys in a book-lined room, who in turn are taking orders from Something Out There. Great stuff.

But in light of recent developments, one of the film's details made me laugh. At one point David Duchovny explains that various dark deeds are being performed by the U.S. government, and that the bureau responsible for the darkest deeds, the most unflinchingly cold-blooded malevolence, is -- the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

After Katrina, it's clear that FEMA couldn't buy a bottle of water at the Kwik Sak, much less manage a global holocaust at the direction of alien masters. But I guess that's why they call it science fiction.

(Unless hurricanes and bureaucratic "ineptitude" are part of the conspiracy?!?!?!?!)

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