Tuesday, February 07, 2017

"Arrival" vs. "Contact" smackdown

I have yet to write that review of "Arrival" (very busy at work, not much energy when home—please bear with me), but I did find this excellent piece that compares 2016's "Arrival" with 1997's "Contact" in smackdown form. The writer does a fine job of listing the various parallels and differences between these two largely overlapping films—so good a job, in fact, that I'm tempted not to write a review at all. But I'll write one—I promise.

Meanwhile, enjoy the above-linked smackdown.


Charles said...

Never saw either of these. After reading the article, I kind of want to.

Kevin Kim said...

They're both good movies, but the author of that article is right insofar as "Contact" beats you over the head with its moral message. The film also offers nothing new to those who are already familiar with the science/religion debate, at least as it has played out in the United States. Oh, yeah—and "Contact" also contains some painfully corny moments when Ellie is wormholing.

The article's author says that "Contact" is faithful to the novel, but the movie actually departs from the novel in two major ways: (1) the vessel that humanity is given to design and build is supposed to contain a team of people, not an individual; (2) the movie omits what transpires in the novel's final chapter, when Ellie Arroway makes a gigantic discovery about the possibly theistic nature of our universe. (The chapter's title is, tellingly, "The Author's Signature.")