This is great headbanger sci-fi, centering more on philosophy than science. If you read books in this genre, you know that the good ones do that. We have the usual paranoid military versus inquisitive scientists doing all of the battle in this one, which sets up the main question being explored in this film -- why do that? But the logical question the characters want answered is -- what do you want? That one does get answered, but only in quick passing, and it doesn't seem very relevant. The theme is a bit like that of The Day the Earth Stood Still (both versions). In those, the alien message was, get your shit together or be history. In this one its more like, please get your shit together because .... and to finish that is too much of a spoiler.
Language, thought and cultural patterning is the focus of the action, as Amy Adams and Jeremy Renner try to form a common basis for communication. With the aliens.
Interwoven into this scenario is the touching and tragic personal history of Adams, who seemingly is subjected to time-wharping visions by the aliens to sharpen her focus for their mission. There is a huge ah-ha moment at the end of two hours which helps tie the sequences together for viewers. Not too many ah-ha moments any more in films.
In all, a very entertaining film worth the time, providing much to ponder. Although Adams was practically the movie, I thought she played it too understated. Maybe Oscar voters felt the same.
All I know is that I'll never look at a plate of calamari the same again.
Edits: 02/16/17This post is made possible by the generous support of people like you and our sponsors:
Topic - The Arrival has arrived at Comcast pay-play. - free.ranger 21:06:47 02/16/17 (15)
- RE: me too; rented the movie over Fios On-Demand (spoilers, perhaps) - user510 14:16:44 03/04/17 (0)
- Saw it again, but on PPV last night, with subtitles - Road Warrior 16:14:41 02/18/17 (6)
- RE: Saw it again, but on PPV last night, with subtitles - email@example.com 08:18:44 02/19/17 (5)
- The Monolith was an "early warning" system . . . - Billy Wonka 13:03:18 02/19/17 (4)
- RE: The Monolith was an "early warning" system and something else.... - user510 15:16:28 02/19/17 (2)
- Glad you mentioned 2010. An under rated gem IMHO^ - Road Warrior 17:52:08 02/20/17 (1)
- RE: Glad you mentioned 2010. An under rated gem IMHO^ - user510 12:07:27 02/21/17 (0)
- It was a router for a distance learning system. nt - geoffkait 14:34:03 02/19/17 (0)
- Also on Blu-ray. (nt ) - Jack G 05:44:46 02/18/17 (0)
- RE: for those who want to know .... synopsis - Arrival - user510 11:50:34 02/17/17 (1)
- The science bits - free.ranger 13:48:08 02/17/17 (0)
- Why would the US Army try to blow up talking tree trunks? Nt - geoffkait 06:58:01 02/17/17 (3)
- If you hadn't walked out so early you'd know this (nt) - Steve O 07:48:21 02/17/17 (2)