“Arrival” Critique, Good Science Fiction by Denis Villeneuve

Thursday, June 15, 2023

He worries about the science behind such an encounter — how does the connection work? How do we learn their language, how do we teach them to understand ours? How much margin of error do we give to interpretation? And the movie’s million-dollar question: If speech defines thought, what kind of astronomical leap might learning a non-human language mean for the evolution of humanity?

This is the kind of science fiction that is more concerned with science than fantasy. In this sense it is very similar to communication (Contact, 2001), by Robert Zemeckis, in which a scientist (Jodie Foster) attempts to contact and understand signs of extraterrestrial life. Apparently Assassin (2015), the previous film by director Denis Villeneuve. His new movie begins with the recruitment of a young heroine on a shady mission, only Amy Adams takes the place of Emily Blunt and her character is vastly more proactive.

The movie is a massive mystery that retells every mystery it uncovers. To speak in any degree of detail about the plot would be to destroy it. Suffice it to say, Louise (Adams) is a linguist called upon to decipher an alien language, teams up with a scientist (Jeremy Renner) and her bosses are a colonel who explains why “military intelligence” is an oxymoron (Forest Whitaker) and a pathetic henchman of the CIA (Michael Stullberg). ). And that there is a very good twist at the end that goes beyond the surprise and makes the movie more complicated to read.

Similar to the impromptu style of AssassinAnd Access (Access, 2016) Distinguish between what is to be shown and what is to be suggested; What is in the foreground and what is in the background. The film mainly takes place in the military base which is set up around a huge block (oval in shape and rising a few meters off the ground) in the middle of a valley engulfed in gusts of mist. It accompanies Jóhann Jóhannsson’s music, based on alarms and sirens that creep unobtrusively along the soundtrack. Through telecasts, phone calls, and radio broadcasts, we witness humanity’s descent into hysteria, adding an element of urgency to the investigation of the protagonists, who in turn must deal with the rancor of the army. Louise, in turn, is anguished by visions of her dead daughter, and it’s not just a tragic detail to describe but ends up connecting to the rest of the film in unexpected and powerful ways.

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The only objectionable thing about the movie is the art design of some of the weird elements. One would think that production would be far from falling into the insignificance of a brutal system. There is a constant complaint that the United States seems to have a monopoly on Close Encounters of the Third Kind. And co-star Renner is relatively soft-spoken alongside Amy Adams. On top of that, the movie — written by Eric Heisserer, based on a short story by Ted Chiang — is very creative in its plot and story treatment, genuinely interested in questioning human perception and exploring the limits of science fiction.

Myrtle Frost

"Reader. Evil problem solver. Typical analyst. Unapologetic internet ninja."

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