If nothing else, the feature length documentary "Millennium After The Millennium" did one thing... and did it well. It made me want to dig through my video collection, find my "Millennium" box set, and begin watching the series again. For me, it's been well over a decade since I last visited this great show - but that changed after seeing this film. At the time of this writing, I am now on episode three and plan to watch straight through.
Could there be a better compliment for a film reminiscing on an old television show? To have it's viewers return to the show in question? I think not. I also think the producers of this film knew exactly what they were doing. Using that ever present sense of nostalgia for anyone who remembers this three season series, to almost guarantee this film will get it's share of promotion - because of the concept alone. What a great idea.
For those who may be unfamiliar, "Millennium" is a three season television show that started in the later nineties. Created by Chris Carter of X-Files fame, the show was groundbreaking at the time with it's stories and presentation. In today's world, maybe not unique in a lot of ways but for the time... it was something really special. "Millennium After The Millennium" is a detailed documentary with it's driving force being interviews with the former cast. Mixed in with segments from the show itself, as well as other shows, it plays like a special features segment and looks great.
I can't stress enough the joy I felt seeing the cast and crew discussing their former characters, and this film is akin to a love letter - for anyone who remembers and loved the show. I also felt like I was watching a petition of sorts for a continuation of the series - and really can't write anything bad about that idea. In today's world of reboots and sequels, this is one show that I feel would flourish today. Maybe a change in name would be in order, but everything else would easily fall into place.
So here's the thing. Technically, as I mentioned above, "Millennium After The Millennium" is a great looking film. Looking as good - or better - than those special feature mini-movies we've all become accustomed to seeing. Without question, some real care was put into the presentation of this piece; it never looks or feels cheap by any means. It does feel a little long however, especially during the last fifteen minutes or so.
I feel that windy feeling comes from the same things that make this film so good. The interviews. Although there are segments from the show added in to break things up, there's not really anything from the production itself. We're all used to seeing how shots were crafted, within the features of our favorite film or show. That's not really the case here and because of that, combined with the hour and a half length, it all starts to feel like one big interview scene. That's not all bad, especially for people who remember and loved the show, but even then it felt a little drawn out. Only a little though.
Yet... this also brings me to my next point. I watched this film with my wife in the room, who had never seen the original show. For her, there simply wasn't enough to keep her fixated on the screen. She didn't get those nostalgic waves. I wrote above that "Millennium After The Millennium" felt like a love letter and petition to reboot the series. For her however, that feeling never materialized. The main, and only real problem I can really find with this film, is that it's for fans of the show only. That's not a bad thing, I just wish more could have been done to entice those who didn't know what it was. I don't know how that could have been done - but felt that way none the less.
At the end of the day this film is for the fans - and the fans will eat it up. It's a shame a way couldn't be found to bring in new eyes - and keep them glued to the screen, but what can you do? If I could, I would have rated this four and a half stars or more - based on my thoughts alone. But I have to consider the entire picture. "Millennium After The Millennium" is a great film to watch if you know and love the show. For most others, a passing curiosity. Unless of course, we all get the chance to see Frank Black's story continue. Wouldn't that be great!