Saturday, August 2, 2008

Believe It or Not

Controversy has erupted over perceived homophobia in The X-Files: I Want to Believe, which opend last weekend to lackluster reviews and middling box office (guess there won't be an X-Files 3 ... although, apparently nobody told Chris Carter). Reportedly, the sequel contains some questionable content that, considering its spoilerish nature, I'll let describe.

In response to this possibly offensive material, our resident critic Chris Carpenter (who gave I Want to Believe a favorable review) had this to say:

"I had some of the same concerns watching the film, and I'm a gay Catholic priest so I was especially sensitive about that. However, as I've thought the story through, I think its point is quite the opposite: it tries to equate the gay married couple with straight married couples in showing the (admittedly twisted) extremes that some will go to in order to keep a loved one alive. Working in hospice as I do, I see that desperation pretty regularly."

UPDATED: Frank Spotnitz, co-writer of I Want to Believe, responds to the controversy.

1 comment:

  1. Hey, it's Chris Carpenter. I wanted to say a little more about this "controversy" (no one I know in the LA area is talking about it). It is a given that the villains of the movie are a gay couple and their mad scientist friend, but is it now etched in stone that LGBT people are never allowed to be the bad guys or gals in contemporary films? How limiting and boring that would be. Again, the "X-Files" antagonists aren't depicted as misguided because they are gay. I was more concerned about a scene late in the film where Billy Connolly's priest character is accused of causing one of the boys he'd abused decades before of becoming gay, and subsequently a killer. But this is also a shallow reading of the plot. That the disgraced, pedophile priest is ultimately shown as playing a critical role despite his past in God's plan to discover the killers, gay or straight, is the boldest part of the story.

    I could go on, but space is limited. If you've seen the movie, let's chat/debate!


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