The X-Files: Fight the Future

  • Review Date: June 11, 2008
  • Rated: PG-13
  • Genre: Science Fiction
  • Release Year: 1998

Common Sense Media says

Same TV show sci-fi on a king-sized f/x budget.
  • Review Date: June 11, 2008
  • Rated: PG-13
  • Genre: Science Fiction
  • Release Year: 1998





What parents need to know

Positive messages

Though government authorities are repeatedly shown as untrustworthy, corrupt, and potentially evil, Agents Scully and Mulder uphold the FBI traditions and rules (including not abandoning a fellow officer). They also represent two different aspects of human inquiry. Mulder is imaginative and open to even the weirdest possibilities. Scully is more hard-headed and scientific. They have an incipient romance, not explored in depth here, but show professional appreciation and loyalty to each other.


Alien claws gash humans; humans stab aliens. Explosions and gun shots.


A few off-color references. Agent Scully is supposed to be naked in suspended animation, but we don't see much.


"S--t" and "asshole."

Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Agent Mulder gets drunk in a bar. A villainous character ("The Smoking Man") smokes a lot.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this is pretty much what you'd expect from a typical X-Files TV episode, but with PG-13 amped-up profanity and violence. Fox Mulder curses, people bleed and get shot in the head, and there are massive explosions. A heavy paranoid-conspiracy mindset suggests that acts of terrorism (specifically the Oklahoma City bombing) could be perpetrated by untrustworthy U.S. government officials doing inside jobs -- a worldview some parents might not want to encourage.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

Fans of TV's The X-Files are the main audience for this theater-screen extrapolation of the paranormal-paranoia one-hour chiller. Dovetailing with a long, complicated saga threading in and out of TV episodes, THE X-FILES: FIGHT THE FUTURE finds FBI investigators Fox Mulder (David Duchovney) and Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson), formerly running a special branch devoted to the weird and supernatural, now demoted to "routine" police work -- like a mammoth terrorist explosion leveling a government building in Dallas. Mulder, however, learns the bombing was a diversion, to destroy evidence that an extraterrestrial virus had been unearthed from its Ice Age cave nearby and is infecting humans. Apparently space beings, aided by a worldwide conspiracy of elite human traitors, have been slowly colonizing Earth for many years. But thanks to the vicious monsters produced by the virus, the process now looks less like a peaceful Invasion of the Body Snatchers infiltration and more of a grisly Alien massacre -- unless Mulder and a slightly disbelieving Scully can expose the plot before it's too late.

Is it any good?


Though one might expect an X-Files-based feature to take the series and its themes into fresh directions, this UFO-show doesn't gain much more altitude. The cast has the privilege of swearing, and the special effects and sets are more expensive. One very minor character held over from the TV show dies (or...does he?); others make brief fan-pleasing cameos. That's pretty much it.

As with the small-screen scripts, we get a tantalizing sci-fi plotline, full of questions, maddeningly unresolved by the finale, with shadowy villains still gloating that Mulder (who pops up mysteriously in Arctic for an especially farfetched and mystifying climax) still don't know what's really going on. If he doesn't, neither do we, and the show's repeated message to "trust no one," especially government authorities, starts to seem a little stale and lazy. When a drunken Mulder urinates on an alley poster for Independence Day, it may be a clue to what the filmmakers here thought of that simple-minded blockbuster. At least it had a storyline any average viewer could follow.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the difference between the TV show and the movie. Would it be better if there were hard-and-fast answers? How about the world and the political climate since The X-Files became popular? Does its message of endless conspiracy and shadowy cabals manipulating events still look appealing in a "Homeland Security" climate? Do you trust the government to tell the truth about UFOs? What about September 11th and Iraq, then? And is the comparison even fair?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:June 19, 1998
DVD release date:January 23, 2001
Cast:David Duchovny, Gillian Anderson, Martin Landau
Director:Rob Bowman
Studio:Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment
Genre:Science Fiction
Run time:122 minutes
MPAA rating:PG-13
MPAA explanation:some intense violence and gore.

This review of The X-Files: Fight the Future was written by

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  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
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  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Teen, 13 years old Written bycode2264 March 22, 2009

yes awsome

it makes you thinnk.....

What other families should know
Too much consumerism
Kid, 12 years old Written byfluffyfuzz August 31, 2010

this movie is very simalar to the alien movie aliens growing inside bodys and then bursting out of them

What other families should know
Too much violence
Teen, 13 years old Written byKennyMcCormick October 3, 2011

The X-Files Movie!

Great movie for The X-Files fans!

What other families should know
Too much violence


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