Arrival | Review

Three 'brothers' from the Night Gathers Editorial team recently went to check out Arrival. Rather than instigate trial-by-combat for review rights, they've each got some reflections to share with you.

Synopsis in a sentence

George | What if Contact was a beautiful and thoughtful sci-fi rather than an eye-rolling mushy mess?

Ethan | Aliens are just trying to be cool, showing us this cool language that will unlock time and space – people can be jerks though.

Logan | Cunning linguist cracks alien time tongue.


What were your expectations & were they fulfilled?

George | I had pretty high expectations after the trailer and reading the reviews. I’m happy to say my expectations were exceeded.

Ethan | I went in to Arrival not knowing a whole lot about it, other than it was focusing on language, rather than aliens wiping out humanity. The language developed was beautiful, and the way Dr Louise Banks dealt with trying to translate said language was fascinating to watch – ‘fulfilled’.

Logan | George said I was going to cry like a baby and he was right.


What was the best scene?

George | Amy Adams arriving in Montana by helicopter.

Ethan | The point where Louise and Ian were actually successfully translating and communicating with their Alien visitors. 

Logan | When the aliens first emerge out of the mist and my suspicions about squids and elephants mating is confirmed. 


Anything particularly clever in this film?

George | The central premise, the cinematography, the score, the design of the alien environment, the performances… pretty much everything.

Ethan | Science fiction hasn’t often delved into the realm of language, so it’s refreshing to see a new take on alien first contact.

The prestige level reveal as you finally realise *spoiler* Dr Louise Banks flashbacks were actually visions of her future.

It was clever how the Aliens got to earth without thumbs.

Logan | Being able to tie together a global nuclear catastrophe, top-tips for deciphering alien languages and a love story. 


Who was your favourite character and why?

George | Linguistics professor Louise Banks. Amy Adams just owns it. The intelligence, sparkle, and pathos on shown is incredible.

Ethan | Kodos. 

Logan | Amy Adams as Dr Banks – nailed it. Inspirational for amateur linguists everywhere.


Who would enjoy this film?

George | People who want more thinking than fighting robots in their sci-fi.

Ethan | Middle aged service designers – Probably with one child. 

Logan | Anybody with eyes. Captivating special effects and a great story with a twist. 

Number of tears shed?

George | 32 Tears

Ethan | 0 Tears in the theatre. Lots in the privacy of my own home.

Logan | 7 Tears 

Raven Rating?

George | 5 Ravens 

Ethan | 3 Ravens

Logan | 4 Ravens

Final Raven Rating 



Author: Logan Westwater - follow me on Twitter @WestwaterLogan

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