When I heard a while back that one of my favorite directors, Denis Villeneuve, was attached to a science fiction movie about being in contact with aliens, my interest piqued and I eagerly awaited more information regarding the project — but the little pieces that I learned felt promising. Then the first trailer released as if from nowhere and I was blown away. I knew the film would be a treat. What I found out later was that a big piece of what makes Arrival so special is the adapted screenplay of Ted Chiang’s short story Story of Your Life by Eric Heisserer.
Arrival is about extraterrestrials showing up on earth in giant, oblong, stone-like structures, upending the social order of things. A linguist (Amy Adams) is recruited by the military to help communicate with the aliens to find out what their intentions are before other countries take matters into their own hands and start a large scale war against them.