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USA 2016 - with Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner, Forest Whitaker, Michael Stuhlbarg ...

The Frankfurt-Tipp rating:

Movie info

Original title:Arrival
Genre:Sci-Fi, Drama
Direction:Denis Villeneuve
Cinema release:24.11.2016
Production country:USA 2016
Running time:Approx. 116 min.
Rated:Age 12+

The unbelievable has become reality: A total of twelve spaceships have landed in various locations around the globe. No one knows with what intentions the alien visitors have come to Earth. People are full of worry and government leaders are getting nervous. To prevent a military confrontation, renowned linguist Louise Banks (Amy Adams) and mathematician Ian Donnelly (Jeremy Renner) are tasked with making contact with the aliens and deciphering what they want on our planet. But the search for answers turns out to be extremely difficult, because the two need something above all, of which they have less and less: Time!

With Arrival, director Denis Villeneuve (Prisoners, Sicario) delivers further proof of his artistic versatility and craftsmanship. At the same time, this magnificently directed alien invasion is a perfect testament to the fact that Villeneuve is absolutely the right choice for the Blade Runner sequel he'll be bringing to theaters in 2017. That's because Villeneuve proves that it's possible to tell intelligent sci-fi stories that aren't overburdened by gratuitous CGI overkill or in which an alien invasion is beaten down with sledgehammer patriotism. Sure, movies like that can be mighty fun. But it's just nice when a director isn't afraid to use a genre like this to tell a deep, highly emotional story once in a while.

It's not meant to give too much away here, of course, as the film takes a very different direction than one might initially suspect and deals with a question that goes far beyond the usual How Would You Act In An Alien Invasion theme. Although the final act in particular is the most interesting part of the film for a review, I prefer to turn to other aspects of the production so as not to detract from the emotional impact of the final twenty minutes. But much more can be said about Arrival, thankfully. There is, for example, the almost perfect interplay of images and music, which intensifies the effect of what is being told, especially at the beginning, but also in many other moments. The acting of the actors, especially Amy Adams, is very good and also the elaborate, yet somehow restrained CGI effects are beyond reproach.

What might bother some viewers is that - apart from one short scene - there is no action at all. The dialogue and moral issues are absolutely paramount here. Arrival is not a simple popcorn movie, but a film that demands thought and reflection from its audience. You have to be able to get involved with that as well as with the very emotional core of the story, which might seem a bit too thick for some. But if you manage to let yourself be carried by the slow pace of the story and allow the emotions that the film stirs up, you will realize that Arrival is nothing less than a masterpiece of modern science fiction cinema. A great film that should definitely be seen on the big screen, and not just because of its mesmerizing imagery. One of the cinema highlights of 2016 and therefore also: absolutely worth seeing!!!

An article by Frankfurt-Tipp


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Cinema trailer for the movie "Arrival (USA 2016)"
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