X-Files: I Want to Believe isn’t the worst movie I’ve ever seen, but it might be one of the more half-assed. 10 years separate the first X-Files movie from the sequel. 10 years, and yet in all that time they never managed to get a script beyond the outline stage. That’s really what this is: a script outline, a series of scenes only loosely tied together with some of the lamest expository dialogue since Independence Day.
See, the tough part of writing anything is the little details, those plausible yet novel sequences of events that connect one concept to another. The concepts themselves are important too, but that’s the creative part, the fun part. Connecting those concepts requires work, not just ideas but critical thinking. The writers of X-Files 2, meanwhile, seem to have discovered a novel method for bypassing all that by just having Scully look shit up on the internet. No, really. At one point Dr. Scully is trying to save a kid with an incurable brain disease (and I’m being extremely generous by not making fun of the kid’s unintentionally hilarious mongoloid speech right now); she goes from having no treatment for the kid one day, then that night we see her Google – seriously, we actually watch her type this into Google – “stem cell research”. And voila! The next day Scully miraculously has a radical new stem cell treatment for the boy. Between the way they envision a doctor’s research process and the way they structure their script, you really get a sense of what the writers’ concept of hard work must be.