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Movie Reviews 2016
Movie review: ROGUE ONE
Blu-ray review: PHANTASM RAVAGER
Blu-ray review: PHANTASM Remastered
Movie review: ARRIVAL

ARRIVAL (2016)

movie review by David Blackwell


116 minutes, Rated PG-13

STUDIO: Paramount Pictures/ Filmnation Entertainment/ 21 Laps Entertainment

Theatrical RELEASE DATE: 11-11-2016

Dr. Louise Banks (Amy Adams) is a linguistics professor living a quiet life filled with work, glasses of wine at home, and memories of her daughter whose life is caught in glimpses from birth to her young death.  Her students are distracted one day due to the arrival of twelve alien spaceships hovering over 12 locations around the world.  The military requests her help in communicating with the aliens known as Heptapods.  She is whisked away to rural Montana with theoretical physicist Ian (Jeremy Renner).   They can enter the giant black egg shaped ship about every 18 hours to talk with the Heptapods who communicate through sound and inky circles which contains a whole sentence or idea.  Louise and Ian must figure out why the aliens are here and whether they are delivering a weapon or gift to the human race.


ARRIVAL is a clever subtle sci-fi movie from director Denis Villeneuve (the director of the BLADE RUNNER sequel out next October) which is a visual treat as its ideas and themes feel like something you see in Solaris or Stalker (two films by Russian director Andrei Tarkovsky).  The movie has a few surprises I won’t talk about since the twists would spoil the experience and the story.  I find myself still thinking about it as ARRIVAL touches upon the barriers of language and mistrust.   People are so easy to distrust other humans and even aliens.   Language and point-of-view is even a barrier.   Also the Heptapods communicate through a non-linear way while we communicate in a straightforward linear manner.  If you’re expecting an alien invasion movie with big battles, ARRIVAL isn’t the movie for you.  However if you want an intelligent and thought provoking film, you want to go see what is one of the best movies of the year.  ARRIVAL is an instant sci-fi classic.


This review is 11-14-2016 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission.  Send all comments to feedback@enterline-media.com


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