Heard of Close Encounters of the Third Kind? Of course you have. The title of Spielberg’s alien classic refers to a system of classification developed in 1972 by J. Allen Hynek. The idea was explored in his book The UFO Experience: A Scientific Enquiry. According to Mr. Hynek, once a person is within about 150 yards of a strange object or inexplicable light source, he or she qualifies for his system of classification.
Should you merely see a peculiar flying object, or some strange lights, then it is a close encounter of the first kind. The second kind would involve physical impressions left in the landscape or on the body of a viewer (perhaps a dent on a car, or a burn on someone’s arm). Hynek’s system ends with the third kind; an actual sighting of an entity or entities on board a UFO.
The Fourth Kind is not a sequel to Spielberg’s alien blockbuster, nor is it supported by J. Allen Hynek’s original list of ‘close encounters’. A close encounter of the fourth kind is generally defined by today’s ufologists as abduction, and so the premise of this film revolves around ‘actual archive footage’ of people talking about and experiencing such an encounter.
The movie begins with ‘real’ footage of Fourth Kind director Olatunde Osunsanmi interviewing gaunt psychologist Dr. Abigail Tyler as she retells her terrifying story.