Flash Movie Review: Arrival

THEY seemed scared as they huddled over their map. Looking up at the arrival time for the next train, they stood near the edge of the train platform. I made the assumption they were tourists who were not familiar with the language. Luckily I knew how to say hello and how are you in their language; plus, I was ½ of the winning team among my friends in charades the past 2 years which I felt could help. Walking up to them I said hello and immediately their heads sprung up and turned to me. They excitedly began talking to me in their native tongue but I had no clue what they were saying. I made hand gestures which I hoped conveyed the little I knew about their language then pointed at their map and made a questioning facial expression. En masse they moved next to me and pointed to a sticky note attached to what I could see on the map was the downtown area.   THEY were looking for a well known tourist attraction in the city. Using my charade skills I was able to show them which train they had to get on and how many stops they needed to travel to get to their destination. I think they were saying thank you to me as my train arrived and I bordered it. Being proud of my city I have this thing where I want all tourists to have the best time here. So if I can spend a few minutes learning how to communicate with those who do not speak English it is well worth it to me. The key word is communicating; I see and have experienced so many people who do not take the time to properly communicate. It seems as if language is turning into a series of emails, texts, abbreviations and emojis. How can someone figure out a person’s intent with such things?   LINGUISTIC expert Dr. Louise Banks, played by Amy Adams (American Hustle, Man of Steel), was given a short time frame to find a way to communicate with the alien spacecraft that landed on earth before the military took over. This film festival nominated drama mystery took a different route from the usual alien versus human plot and it paid off. I enjoyed it so much and thought Amy was fantastic in the role. Along with Jeremy Renner (The Avengers franchise, The Hurt Locker) as Ian Donnelly and Forest Whitaker (Lee Daniels’ The Butler, The Last King of Scotland) as Colonel Weber, the actors did well in conveying a sense of urgency and fear. The soundtrack added an eerie dimension to the scenes that I felt brought out more suspense. With director Denis Villeneuve’s (Prisoners, Sicario) skills the story had a gradual buildup of tension, even with the subplot that was interjected between present day scenes. This science fiction movie had a couple of surprises, though I have to say the ending was confusing to me. I am not sure I totally understood what was going on but I still felt like I was entertained for the most part. Especially with the poor (in my opinion) state of communications today, I really was impressed with this picture.


3 ¼ stars    




About moviejoltz

From a long line of movie afficionados, one brother was the #1 renter of movies in the country with Blockbuster, I am following in the same traditions that came before me. To balance out the long hours seated in dark movie theaters, I also teach yoga and cycling. For the past 3 years, I have correctly picked the major Oscar winners... so join me as we explore the wonder of movies and search for that perfect 4 star movie.

Posted on November 14, 2016, in Fantasy/Sci-Fi and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 15 Comments.

  1. Great review – I plan on seeing it soon.

  2. The film is getting great reviews! I am particularly interested in bridging the language gap, having studied German for one year, Spanish for over two years, and French for many years (I have an M.A in French Literature, and am currently nearing the end of an easy-to-read book written by Jules Verne). I really like how you personalize your movie reviews.

    • Thank you for your comments and kind words. I admire your language abilities; I feel that skill will always serve a person well. If you see this film I would enjoy hearing your take on it if you do not mind. Take care.

  3. Thanks. I’m looking forward to it.

  4. Still not played in Jakarta. Definitely wanna see this.

  5. Just reviewed it myself. Never expected to have the experience I did. Fine review!

  6. I debated between that and Dr. Strange yesterday, but since you’d already reviewed Strange, I went for that. It was great. I later conferred with my daughter who is a big Marvel’s fan and she agreed with me, that I never pictured BC as a romantic hero, but he was great. She says, she is now a Cumberbitch. (kids these days) I’d never heard that before but i guess it means “fan”.
    As for your assessment of communication. I love it! I do the same thing, all the time. I’m not great at Charades but being bi-lingual and having studied French and Italian, I find that there are cross over words in several languages, just knowing those, helps. I’m always amazed at how much I can help people with and how much they appreciate the effort. Plus at the Clinic I worked at I had translator installed on my phone (still do) and if I get hung up on a word, I have them type in what they want and hit translate and then back and forth we go. Of course it was more important for accuracy in diagnosis.

    • I so admire your ability with languages and feel a kinship in our thoughts about communications. Glad you enjoyed the film and learned a new word (Cumberbitch), wow. Thank you for your comments and support; I truly appreciate it.

  7. let’s take a vote. those who saw the movie, was the ending showing the future or the past???

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