Encore for Arrival: This is a PSA


If you live in Birmingham, AL — or, I understand, in a number of other markets — you should be aware that the powers that be have sent A​rrival back into theaters to take advantage of its Oscar buzz.

If you haven’t seen it, here’s what you need to know: Do.

Denis Villeneuve, the director ​ of ​Sicario — and the forthcoming B​lad​e Runner sequel — and, thrillingly, a just-confirmed adaptatio​n of D​une — brings the goods. It helps that he’s got two of the industry’s best actors in Amy Adams and Jeremy Renner. It helps that the hilariously nam​ed composer ​Jóhann Jóhannsson is there to make the room shake.​ It helps that his DP, Bradford Young, knows how to paint with light instead of merely shoot with it.

It helps, basically, that this is one of those movies where everybody involved is doing good work.

Ev​en better, ​Arrival is high-concept alien material, but it’s decidedly NOT dumb or explode-y or particularly “Hollywood.” It’s closer in spirit to some​ thing like C​ontact; a movie that capably entertains while asking interesting questions.

It investigates the nature of communication, silhouetting the problems we see every day in our own political arenas and media circuses against the world-changing event of an alien spaceship touching down in Montana. There are times where it resembles a modern-day T​he Day the Earth Stood Still.

But unlike that movie, there’s even a surprisingly resonant character story smuggled inside the hard sci-fi trappings.

In short, it’s great. And now you have a second chance to see it on the big screen.

This has been a PSA.

-David Rice, Outpost editor & fx artist

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