|The Hidden Hand|
The Hidden Hand: Alien Abduction and the Government
- The film takes a keen look at a spectrum of topics like alien abduction, human/alien hybridization, the military’s reverse-engineering of alien technology and the government cover-up of anything related to extraterrestrials.
- Is preoccupation with E.T.’s a form of cultural madness, or is something really going on?
- How would E.T. contact change the religious and political institutions of our society?
The Hidden Hand is full of riveting interviews with experts and experiencers alike: Whitley Strieber, Dr. Edgar Mitchell – 6th astronaut on the moon, Paul Hellyer – former Canadian Defence Minister, Richard Dolan, Jim Marrs, Linda Moulton Howe, Col. John Alexander, Lyn Buchanan, Clifford Stone, Nassim Haramein, David Icke, Dr. Roger Leir, Graham Hancock and Paola Harris, among others.
- The shadowy world of UFOs is suddenly brought to light.
The X Files series and films stood on their hero’s mission statement that: ‘The truth is out there’. James Carman’s new documentary, full title The Hidden Hand - Alien Contact & the Government Cover-Up, at first plays like a DVD extra to Agent Mulder’s new film. Or a collection of his top UFO hits. However, this is by all accounts, a serious assembly of evidence that UFO’s do exist, aliens are visiting earth and this truth is being suppressed by the ‘authorities’.
Carman has gathered an extensive line up of interviewees. They range from former high ranking US military officials, doctors, surgeons, pilots, astronauts such as Dr Edgar Mitchell, UFO experts, authors and researchers. There is a fair amount of candid thought and insight from the talking heads. This ranges from the ‘look at the night sky, isn’t it obvious?’ point of view to the lucid reasoning of the more academically minded. Their segments are perhaps most intriguing when their edits string together the conspiracy that not only has the US administration lied about its UFO knowledge, it has been contracting it out to high-level businesses.
Various alien abductees then recount at least four different types of ET visiting earth (‘greys’ bad, ‘blondes’ good), being taken onto spaceships, subjected to experiments by aliens, forced to have sex with them and then later meet their alien hybrid offspring. Believe it or not, it’s at least clear that some of these people are talking about traumatic experiences of some kind that they are having to live and cope with. The people appear sincere and their encounters bring a measure of the personal and intimate to the otherwise cosmic conspiracy landscape.
Carman seesaws between these two broad categories of interview, splitting them into a film divided by a flow of chapters, titled such as Exopolitics, Human Military Abductions and Sexual Experimentation. This means that we never rest with one person for very long, whereas longer spells may have lent the interviews heft rather than always being promptly chopped for the edit. Still, Carman paces The Hidden Hand well and it covers a lot of ground while its two-hour running time doesn’t drag.
A narrator throws out questions and suggestions with each chapter, often over shaky footage of flying objects, that provoke and tantalise rather than posit any theory to be proven by the accounts of those onscreen. Instead it is left for the viewer to decide, although by giving his documentary such a cabalistic title, it is clear where Carman stands. The Hidden Hand can make an interesting, entertaining one side of the story, but it’s noted that no one’s account or statement or possible jumps in logic are scrutinised. Likewise, there’s is little room for naysayers here. This is perhaps refreshing for those who want to believe, as Mulder would say.
Given its subject matter, the film is suffused with feelings of injustice, victimisation and isolation, anger and distrust at an abuse of power, and of excitedly lifting a lid, being on a threshold, and of potential hope and learning for the future. These are expansive themes and on this level the film is an expression of how people deal with them, extra-terrestrials or no - but one’s still got to want to watch a doc about aliens to get there. That or a kicker extra for Ridley von Däniken Scott’s Prometheus.
Reviewed on: 16 Oct 2012
“I can’t stand the term UFOs. We’ve known for years what they are…’
That’s one of the many contributors to The Hidden Hand, a film exploring the claims of people who have seen aliens.
People who say they were abducted are called abductees. People who say they had friendly contact with aliens are called contactees. People who label their experience as neither positive nor negative are called experiencers.
I call all of them something else: crackpots.
But while The Hidden Hand can be a lot of fun to giggle and smirk through, James Carman’s documentary does something a lot smarter: it doesn’t judge them at all. With people around the world all reporting the same details and appearances, are they telling the truth? Is it just mass hysteria? Are people inventing abductions to deal with their own sexual trauma?
Sure enough, words pop up like “genital areas”, “insects”, “blonde women” and “devices”. It doesn’t help that the vox pops are pieced together with such cheesy music and titles: chapter headings such as “GALACTIC CONSCIOUSNESS” appear in giant letters on the screen, while other quotes and evidence are presented, without exception, on “Classified” notepaper.
“These are my principles. And if you don’t like them – well, I have others,” reads one. Quite why Groucho Marx is on an apparently top secret document is never really explained.
Still, Carman has fun with a neat motif that sees a human face look like a mountain range and his range of high authority figures yields enough interesting trivia to keep you hooked: why would NASA write a 20-page letter to Spielberg attacking Close Encounters of the Third Kind if there was nothing to hide? One man’s description of being introduced to a rectal probe by E.T. as rape is equally eye-opening, while another guy simply spends most of his interview sobbing, lying (for some reason) on a luxurious red bed sheet.
“They’re telling stories that are so abnormal that they couldn’t make them up,” argues one expert towards the end. I agree with the first part. The Hidden Hand lets you make up your own mind on the second.
■ Produced, shot and directed by: James Carman
■ Edited by Dan Rovetto
■ Music by Mikael Karlsson
■ Narrated by Tristan Layton
■ Illustrations by Nick Danzi, Kesara,
Marc Brinkerhoff and Josi Galante
■ Graphics by Chocolate Media
■ Hip to Be a Hybrid, sung by Trystette