A very short review of “Arrival” (2016)

“Arrival” (2016) is an unusually smart and thought-provoking science fiction film.  It isn’t really intended by its creators as a “twist movie,” but it does include an unexpected component that should surprise and challenge the viewer.  (I don’t want to say more about it, for fear of spoilers.)

Amy Adams actually is a terrific actress, and she seems to do well in understated roles that require her to be thoughtful and deliberate.  (Jeremy Renner and Forest Whitaker are both quite good too, even if they seem confined to roles here that don’t require much range.)

One caveat — this isn’t a standard science fiction thriller.  (Although “Arrival” has some decent suspense, I’m inclined to think that this shouldn’t be considered a thriller at all.)  I do think that viewers expecting a more mainstream film will be disappointed with this story conclusion’s more subdued and unconventional payoff. (Again, I just can’t say more here.)

I’d rate this an 8 out of 10; and I would recommend it to science fiction fans.

 

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2 thoughts on “A very short review of “Arrival” (2016)

  1. I agree. This is smart science fiction. I didn’t really notice until the end that there was only one real action sequence, and that fact did nothing to diminish my enjoyment of the movie. I wish more science fiction films would develop their concepts like this. I also read the short story on which the movie was based (available free online). It’s technical and even less dramatic, but it was well-conceived and imaginative.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I, too, enjoyed it. Not an abduction or invasion movie, but a clever “awareness”-type. As Mr. Nolan says, can’t say more to avoid spoilers. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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