7:30 PM, 2nd March, 2017
Twelve giant Brazil-nut-shaped UFOs arrive at seemingly random locations around the world. There they sit for weeks as mankind attempts to make contact, all the while tension between nations of the world escalates as they disagree on how to proceed.
Enter Dr Louise Banks (Adams), a leading linguistic expert engaged by the military (led by an in-form Whitaker) to help communicate with the aliens and find out why they have come to Earth – and whether they pose a threat to mankind. As Louise and physicist Ian Donnelly (Renner) form a basic vocabulary with the seven-limbed extra-terrestrials and begin to understand how to communicate, tensions outside the ship escalate to the brink of war as an animalistic fear breeds within society. The situation is made more complicated when the aliens share what seems to be a complex algorithm with Louise’s team.
Arrival is a masterpiece. It tells a story that thrills and resonates emotionally in equal measure. It doesn’t talk down to its audience and still manages to convey potentially complex ideas in an understandable, engaging manner. The film looks magnificent. In a market full of empty effects-laden remakes and reboots it is refreshing to see that Hollywood can still turn out genuinely original content with the same quality bells and whistles.