2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Slicker, Smarter
This was the last season filmed in Vancouver, Canada, and perhaps for that reason some storylines are set in Canada's white north. And for that reason this season marks the end of the X-Files as it had been, but I don't want to spoil things by giving it away. The motion picture hit theatres the summer after this season, and so in making it the producers, writers, cast and...
Published on April 17 2010 by Greg
3.0 out of 5 stars Twilight Time
Season five marked several highlights in the production of The X-Files. It was the show's last season in Vancouver before moving to Hollywood, and because The X-Files movie was shot in a few months right before, season five was the shortest to date, totaling 20 episodes compared to the average 24. With the movie set to take place AFTER season five, Chris Carter and crew...
Published on May 21 2002 by Freddy Morris
Most Helpful First | Newest First
5.0 out of 5 stars the end of the Vancouver era,
Most crucially, the chronology of the production was different from any of the previous years. The crew went into production of the X FILES MOVIE in the summer of 1997 immediately after finishing Season 4. For this reason Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny were, for the first time, aware in advance of where the show's mythology arc would be leading them. It seems impossible that this foreknowledge would not affect their performances; the sustained dramatic intensity characteristic of Season Four was loosened quite a bit in Season Five.
The actors weren't alone in having a tough time adjusting to this odd schedule. The excellent staff writers, having in the two prior years wrung out the most consistently creative scripts in the history of the show, now had their own work looming as their most formidable obstacle! So, from the writing standpoint it is hardly a surprising that Season Five would present a unique challenge. What is remarkable is that apart from a few notable misses ( and one complete bomb ), this year had so many excellent scripts, especially in the "stand alone" episodes.
In contrast to its immediate predecessor, Season Five's strengths are weighted toward scripts displaying some of the humorous eccentricities of the 3rd year, most evident in Vince Gilligan's three contributions ( a sort of equivalent to Darin Morgan's famed triptych from Season 3 ). His "Bad Blood" is an absolute tour de force for the actors. The script draws on subtle aspects of the Scully/Mulder personalities and then "tweaks" them, presenting their differing recollections of a single case; slightly distorted perspectives from both agents with neither one corresponding exactly to what actually occurred. Gilligan's knack for characterization also shines in his "Unusual Suspects", which fleshes out the Lone Gunmen in way that had not heretofore been done. His "Folie a Deux" is not quite at the same level but contains some classic X FILES moments.
John Shiban's "Pine Bluff Variant" is a tightly scripted espionage thriller, one of the finest examples of his writing. David Duchovny seems to revel in the physicality of this episode.
Chris Carter's bizarre but touching "Post Modern Prometheus" ( filmed in black and white ) is essentially an X FILES fairy tale, owing as much to David Lynch as to the gothic horror novel written by Mary Shelley.
"Kill Switch" was written by the science fiction authors William Gibson and Tom Maddox. I'm not familiar with their work but the episode, with its blending of computer technology and contemporary "cyberpunk" subculture, is very well done. The beautiful oldie "Twilight Time", sung by the Platters, is nicely integrated into the framework.
Frank Spotnitz' "Detour" links with previous episodes ( "Darkness Falls" and "Quagmire" ) in its forest setting and environmental theme. This fun "monster of the week" script ( hellishly difficult to film ) has a beautiful scene with Scully and Mulder stranded together in the woods ( mirroring the "holdout" scenes in the other "forest" episodes ).
"Chinga", credited to Stephen King and Chris Carter, is easily the weakest episode of the season as well as the worst script I can recall from the first five seasons. Carter obviously had to dress this one up in a way that plays strictly for laughs.
As regards the mythology arc, the two season opening episodes ( "Redux" / "Redux II") were part of the trilogy linking the previous season's cliffhanger and features some flashback sequences similar to Oliver Stone's "JFK". This two-part script, while quite good, was the first of many future myth episodes that were somewhat self consciously "explanatory" in nature. A heaviness began to set in, with the episodes from mid season ( "Patient X"/"The Red and the Black" ) suffering from increasingly confusing and tangential plot developments. I attribute these problems primarily to the conflicts between the storyline the film would be using, which effectively shut the writer's out of being able to develop the "A" material for television. Additionally, a tinge of ambivalence crept into David Duchovny's performances.
In the prior year Scully's bought with cancer set the stage for the more purely dramatic type of storyline seen in the 5th season's introspective two-part episode titled "Christmas Carol" / "Emily". This script features well-known "Scully" themes from prior seasons: her grief and guilt over her murdered sister, the loss of her ability to conceive, the flowering of a previously dormant religious faith, the emotional bond with Agent Mulder. As some of the steam went out of the myth-arc storyline in the following years, the longstanding "Scully" storyline moved into the foreground and grew into a highly complex melodrama focusing on the two agents interdependence. This approach was not without its aesthetic pitfalls but it seems fitting that the unique Scully/Mulder "symbiosis" would dominate THE X FILES in its final seasons.
Finally, the concluding episode of the Fifth Season was appropriately named "The End", the title reflecting not only the myth arc plotline but also signaling the end of the show's production in Vancouver. The location in British Columbia furnished so much of the shows ambience that it's hard to imagine THE X FILES ever becoming the phenomenon it did without it being filmed there. There are clear signs that point to the Vancouver era ( esp Seasons 3 thru 5 ) as the absolute creative apex of THE X FILES. The location, along with the vital and often cited contributions of the actors/writers/crew, played an important role in lifting the show to the heights of its well-deserved success.
4.0 out of 5 stars Great season, but confusing end,
5.0 out of 5 stars The Greatest Science Fiction Show Hits Season 5,
Disc 1: Unusual Suspects, Redux, ReduxII and Detour
Disc 2: Christmas Carol, Post-Modern Prometheus, Emily and Kitsunegari
Disc 3: Schizogeny, Chinga, Kill Switch and Bad Blood
Disc 4: Patient X, The Red and the Black, Travelers and Mind's Eye
Disc 5: All Souls, The Pine Bluff Variant, Folie a Deux and The End
Disc 6: Supplemental Materials.
And for the special features...
The audio will be presented in Dolby Surround 2.0. There will also be international clips for several episodes, deleted scenes from The Post-Modern Prometheus, Christmas Carol, The Red and the Black and All Souls, audio commentaries for The Post-Modern Prometheus and The Pine Bluff Variant, a thirty minute documentary - The Truth About Season Five, Behind the Truth Spots, special effects clips with commentary, a two minute featurette from the FX network, tv spots, and a DVD-ROM game.
I hope this helps ... and remember THE TRUTH IS OUT THERE!
4.0 out of 5 stars great season but...whats on the horizon after this???,
0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Very Poor,
Amazon Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: The X-Files: Season 5 (DVD)Too bad I really can't rate this product, since it's apparently taking the long way from China to get here.
Most Helpful First | Newest First
The X-Files: Season 5 by R.W. Goodwin (DVD - 2006)
CDN$ 54.98 CDN$ 39.77