#9 “The Wolf of Wall Street”
#7 “Once Upon a Time …in Hollywood ”
#5 “Inside Out ”
#3 – “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”
#2 – Arrival
Release Date: 01 Dec 2017
Cast: Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner, Forrest Whitakker
Oscars: 8 nominations,, 1 win (Sound Editing)
#4 Critically acclaimed movie of 2016
Favourite Line: Louise Banks” “Now THAT’S a proper introduction”
The best Science Fiction movie of the decade. And it is Science Fiction in its truest sense.
Don’t for a second get me wrong. I love big, flashy space operas and super-hero movies. I never miss one. Arrival does not have laser weapon fights or warp drives. It tells one ever expanding story while it narrowly focuses on another. It challenges viewers, demands conversation and is the best First Contact movie ever made.
The genre of first alien contact films is littered with the likes of Independence Day – movies about giant hideous creatures with no motive other than jumping out from behind things and eating humans. Arrival starts with the mysterious arrival of twelve oblong space crafts hovering above Earth at seemingly random locations.
Amy Adams plays Louise Banks, a world-renowned linguistics expert who is tapped by the military to open a line of communication between humans and the “heptapods”, seven-legged octopus like creatures that inhabit the space crafts.
As the movie expands to show the larger effect of the arrival – global distrust, attack or not, governments disagreeing in potentially deadly ways – the movie also focuses down on Louise’s tragic past and grief. The film uses a non-linear time line and requires at least a second viewing.
There are excellent movies that give you a Hollywood ending, where every is safe, the long-lost lovers reunite, there are cheers and parades and you leave the theatre happy with all questions tied up nicely. This is not one of those films. Arrival leaves you in deep and philosophical discussions about alien life, origin of the species, love and loss and so much more.
Of all movies I saw in the 2010s, Arrival had the greatest impact on me from an intellectual perspective. No movie made me think more about who I am and what I would do in the same situation. I have seen it three times now and like all great films, it gets better every time.
There aren’t nearly enough movies like this one.