Arrival (2016)

This is a movie that’s worth knowing as little as possible about until you see it. And you should see it. It’s not flashy action sci-fi, like Rogue One, it’s quiet and builds slowly. You’re not sitting there wondering what the ‘twist’ is, or thinking ‘ahah, I bet it’s…’ – because it’s not that kind of movie. By the time you find out what’s going on, it’s just ‘oh’, and because the story has been revealed at just the right time.

I confess, the trailers left me cold. Alien spacecraft arrive on – or rather, hovering just above – the Earth. A linguistics specialist (Amy Adams) is called in to try to make contact, to find out what the aliens want.

To say much more would be a crime. I avoided this for ages, until reports started filtering in about how good the movie was, and the fact that it was still in the cinema over a month on was another excellent sign. Take it: this is a measured, considered story (based on a short work by the marvellous Ted Chiang), and a film with the other kind of wow factor than all of those big showy action-filled blockbusters.

Released: 10th November 2016
Viewed: 17th December 2016
Running time: 116 minutes
Rated: 12A, but very slow and measured so unlike to appeal to youngsters

My rating: 9/10

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