Arrival film (2016)

Sci-fi has had a bit of a cinematic revival recently, with a steady stream of releases, and the latest addition is first contact flick, Arrival. While alien encounter movies take on many different forms, ranging from the horror of Alien to the global attack of Independence Day: Resurgence, the real thinkers are the ones that ask what should we do if advanced alien beings really did show up on earth.

It’s this standpoint that Arrival takes, looking at the military mobilisation, peaceful attempts at communication and general sense of foreboding that takes place when the real life big green men arrive in their super-sized spaceships from outer-space. That makes the film sound a lot sillier than it looks, so check out the trailer below, as there’s definitely an attempt to take the subject matter as seriously as possible, and you should expect a fairly credible “what if” scenario to be played out.

Release date

Cinema:

The science fiction drama had a UK release date on the big scree on Thursday the 10th November 2016, bringing alien invasion mirth to cinemas at the outset of winter. It came out in the US a day later. The competition at the box office that weekend in the UK included Ewan McGregor’s American Pastoral, the movie adaptation of Edward Bunker’s 1995 novel Dog Eat Dog and Idris Elba drama 100 Streets.

DVD, Blu-ray and digital download:

The UK release date for the DVD, Blu-ray and digital download has been confirmed for the 20th March 2017 and you can pre-order it using the links to Amazon.co.uk and iTunes below:

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Story

When a number of large alien ships appear on earth, the temptation is obviously to nuke the hecking heck out of them, but luckily we manage to hold fire for a while in this particular confrontation. Instead, the military has set up a tenuous link with the alien ships and put together a team to try to forge a positive relationship with the unusual beings inside them. Led by US Army Colonel Weber, the team includes fantastic linguist Louise Banks and maths whizz Ian Donnelly, but can they all pull things together before World War III breaks out, pulling the aliens into the conflict in the process?

Cast

Amy Adams leads the cast as Louise Banks (Batman Vs Superman: Dawn Of Justice) and she’s joined by Forest Whitaker (Rogue One: A Star Wars Story) as the Colonel and Jeremy Renner (Captain America: Civil War) as Ian Donnelly. The cast also includes Michael Stuhlbarg who will also be in action later this year as Nicodemus West in Doctor Strange.

Age rating

The production has been given an age rating in the UK of 12A by the British Board Of Film Classification with infrequent strong language.

Production

Arrival (2016) has been directed by Denis Villeneuve who’s previous credits include Sicario, and he’s currently down as the director of the Blade Runner sequel. Bradford Young is the director of photography and it’s been produced by Shawn Levy, Dan Levine, Aaron Ryder and David Linde. The music is by Jóhann Jóhannsson, who worked with Villeneuve on Sicario and picked up a Golden Globe for his score of The Theory Of Everything.

The plot is based on the science fiction short story, Story of Your Life, by author Ted Chiang and the screenplay has been written by Eric Heisserer. You can see more on the production of the film at the official Twitter page.

First impressions

The cast for Arrival looks very impressive and there’s a good level of weight and impact to the trailer below, but the question is whether or not it does enough to stand out from the massive range of previous alien encounter movies. Amy Adams looks very comfortable in the lead role for the film and she’s got great support from Whitaker and Renner.

It looks like a fairly slow story, so if it doesn’t deliver the heightened tension and momentous nature of the situation it may struggle to impress. However, reviews have been very positive, so the film has done well at the box office and we’re expecting it to be a big DVD and Blu-ray release later in 2017.

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