Arrival- Ashdoc’s short movie review

Amy Adams plays a linguist who is shown caring for her daughter, but the daughter dies in adolescence due to cancer. However, the situation in the world is turned upside down by the appearance of 12 extraterrestrial craft containing alien species. Amy is hired by the government to make contact and try to communicate with this species using her linguistic skills.

For a layman like me, the best part of the movie was when Amy and her team is taken to the alien spaceship. The sight of Amy and Jeremy Renner (a military theoretical physicist) and others suddenly losing the control of gravity over them and floating and walking upwards into the spaceship through a tunnel is enthralling.

Once in contact with the aliens, Amy begins to learn their language using written symbols. Some of their messages nearly send earthlings of other countries on warpath with the aliens.

But as Amy begins to understand what the aliens really want to say, she not only gets a new concept of time and about the past and the future, but begins to understand things about her own life–a life in which Jeremy will play an important role. The aliens have a totally different understanding of time and the understanding of their language is the key to understanding their concept of time .

It was nice to see movies go beyond the concept of ‘little green men’ that used to be our image of aliens in the past. But are the intentions of the aliens good or bad? Why have they come to earth? The movie does throw up some interesting answers.

Towards the end, I was finding it difficult to make sense of what was happening. Maybe the movie is too intellectual for ignoramuses like me. But actually the most interesting part is towards the climax. But it is only after after reading about it on a couple of sites on the internet later that I could understand it. Once I understood what I had seen, I liked the film. In the theatre I was not fully in sync with the happenings towards the end.

I can only hope that others understand the movie fully and it’s ‘intellectual’ climax does not prove to be a impediment to box office success with the audience not fully understanding it.

Photography is great- the alien spaceships hanging in the atmosphere full of mist and clouds; the visuals taken from high up in the sky are breathtaking. Background score and acting by everyone is ok.


Three and a half stars