Arrival (2016) – dir. Denis Villeneuve
Arrival is a story about Louise Banks, a linguist, finding out that she is the ‘chosen one’ to teach the world a new language that changes how humans perceive time and space.
It is somewhat an adventurous tale with its highs and lows. It starts off interestingly, succeeding in catching the audience’s attention. We follow Louise’s (Amy Adams) story. She is a linguistics professor at a college and is quite passionate about it. This is apparent in how vehemently she discusses and defends the subject while conversing with other characters.
The story begins with the arrival of the aliens, Heptapods, to earth. The visuals are incredible, delivering the sense that such beings could actually exist, feeding our imagination, and creating a whole new world. We are also introduced to Ian Donnelly (Jeremy Renner) who is a physicist. Ian and Louise work together with other people to find out the purpose of the aliens on earth. The story does get a little stale in the middle but quickly makes up for it with the bombastic sound effects and plot twists. Kudos to Villeneuve for cheating his audience with yet another mind-bending story. Just like his film Incendies Villeneuve takes his audience on an emotional journey, hitting hard at the end.
Some say that Arrival is emotionally and mentally draining and they are not wrong. It’s the kind of film that you probably wouldn’t watch twice. Regardless. the story sticks in your head. It is well-deserved in its Oscar win for Best Achievement in Sound Editing, BAFTA win for Best Sound, and numerous other nominations. The visuals are crafted beautifully which flow seamlessly with the sound effects and music.
Amy Adams’ acting skills are beyond brilliant. We are beside her every moment of the way and don’t care about her or her other films. We only care about her character in Arrival, Louise; this is definitely to be noted. She can definitely act her way through anything. Jeremy Renner plays a great supporting character as well but Amy Adams carried this film on her shoulders and gave us all an entertaining and intelligent film to enjoy.
In conclusion, Arrival is a visual and aural masterpiece. Definitely a must-watch if you enjoy science fiction, aliens, and thrillers.