I am a bubble burster, always have been. My first experience with The Fourth Kind was writing up the trailer for SciFiSquad with the slug "Trailer for 'The Fourth Kind' Might be Lying to You". I have no innate grudge against the film, but I am aware that we live in the year 2009 and that I am surrounded by magical Interweb-enabled devices that can tell me whether or not I should believe a movie that purports to be "based on actual case studies". Immediately after watching the trailer I set out for confirmation as to whether or not its claims about alien abductions in Nome, Alaska had any basis in this world. I found nothing.

However, I have since then seen The Fourth Kind and I can tell you flat out that it is fascinating. Not because the film is, in fact, fact, but because of how intentionally delusional it is in its approach. It's interesting that people assume/remember The Blair Witch Project and Paranormal Activity both sold themselves as being "real footage" because neither did. Both just played with conventions of the first-person perspective to create an illusion of truth. The Fourth Kind is not content with such a linear ploy, though. It not only contains the same 'found footage' gimmick as those two films, but it pretends the footage is real. It has its star actress literally walk right up to the camera and tell us that the movie is unadulterated truth.

And while that tactic annoyed me at first, I've since come to respect it. I cannot think of any film that has ever used the Door-in-the-Foot technique so brilliantly. I'll explain.

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categories Cinematical