Film review: "The Phenomenon"

This is a review of the movie “The Phenomenon,” from director James Fox and 1091 Productions. I had been waiting eagerly for this documentary to be released and it was finally made available yesterday so I watched it immediately. What I will say upfront is that the wait was worth it and it did not disappoint. Fox takes one of the deepest dives imaginable into the realm of Unidentified Aerial Phenomena, UFOs, or whatever you’re calling them these days and it contains some eye-opening revelations even for those who follow this subject closely.

In terms of filmmaking, Fox delivers a beautiful product as usual. The camera work, editing and soundtrack all deliver a thoroughly enjoyable experience. But it’s the content of the film that truly shines above and beyond the movie when considered as a work of art. Fox covers a raft of UAP encounters, both military and civilian, from the early part of the twentieth century to the present. But he’s not simply retelling well-worn stories. He includes new interviews with some of the key governmental and intelligence figures who have been on the cutting edge of trying to lift the veil of government secrecy regarding the phenomenon of UAPs. One of these is with former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid who spurred the creation of the Pentagon’s original, secret AATIP program. Reid generally plays things close to the vest, but without spoiling it for you, I’ll simply say that Reid comes as close as I’ve ever heard him come to admitting the existence of a government coverup.

Fox does spend some time on several of the more famous UAP/UFP incidents from around the world, uncovering details that many of us hadn’t previously heard, as well as bringing current updates from some of the key players into the mix. He has some extremely rare footage of an interview with Major Jesse Marcel who was with the Roswell Army Airfield in 1947 and a key figure in the infamous Roswell crash incident. He also catches up with some of the witnesses to the Ariel School UFO encounter in Zimbabwe from 1994. (If you’ve never heard of that one you’ll want to check it out.) And there’s much more where that came from.

Prior to the release of the film, Lue Elizondo, who ran AATIP, went out on social media, heartily endorsing the film and suggesting that it provides a peek at information that he wished he could tell the world himself but is barred from doing so because of his nondisclosure agreements. (If you don’t know who Luis Elizondo is by now, this film might not be quite so much up your alley, but it’s still worth a viewing.) I found myself gasping on multiple occasions while watching. I will honestly say that The Phenomenon is nothing short of stunning. It’s currently available on Amazon Prime and can also be accessed through the film’s website.

On the Hot Air scale for subscription-service series and films, The Phenomenon gets a full 4 out of 4:

4 – Subscribe to the service to watch this
3 – Make time to watch it if you already subscribe
2 – Worth a watch if nothing else appeals
1 – Avoid at all costs