By Aranyak Goswami

 

An Interesting Journey through Dimension, Space, Time and Emotions

Our life in this planet has always given rise to queries both in scientific and metaphysical terms about who we are? Why we are here? It has led us to the next round of important query that are we alone in this universe?

The basis of science fiction regarding extraterrestrial life has always been developed based on these queries that have been very much linked to the very existence of intelligent human beings in this so called ordinary member of the Milky Way we benevolently call mother earth. The genre of science fiction in general has dealt with extraterrestrial contact on mother earth in an extremist manner. Psychologically it is always seen that the immediate reaction to what is unknown- is fear. It is through the act of fear that we retaliate the unknown with weapons of conflict that often plagues our existence with stigma and eventual man slaughter. However in a few rare depictions we see aliens befriending a teenager or a group of good hearted jolly kids often gifting them with some tacky and pulpy super powers eventually embarking the way back home.

Undoubtedly the treatments in the books and in the movies have been out rightly superficial. The singular question which is so important in both philosophy and science about why we are here and what is the purpose of life on earth remains potentially unaddressed. It is clear that whenever life arises in any planet that has metamorphosed into the development of a so called complicated civilization dominated by so called intelligent beings like humans the binding fabric among social order are always love, compassion and relationships.

The director based upon the novella by Ted Chiang has made one very important statement that the most important form of communication with extraterrestrial life is through language in a universal form through which a bridge will established across two different life forms and here arrives Amy Adams a linguistic professor with her own issues of losing her dearest daughter that has made her distraught and heartbroken. When twelve space pods with heptapod inhabitants land across different destinations around the globe. The whole world gets terrified with the idea that the inhabitants in those heptapods can mutilate and eradicate humanity.

The mystery surrounding what is the agenda of these extraterrestrials and how it personally altered the life of the protagonist actually forms the crux of the remaining story. The mastery of direction was reflected in almost all departments. The casting of Amy Adams as the protagonist- someone who is top notch in her job along with her restrained pain, touching humanity and tender sensitivity has been more than just perfect. The other aspects that deserve special mention is the aesthetic artistry of the master creator who has restrained himself from portraying grandiosity of a visual spectacle to minimalist symbolism where the substance matters more than shoddy circus of heavy special effects.

The director has been well complemented by some outstanding music from his longtime collaborator and composer Johan Johansson whose vastly internal music has created an eerie atmosphere which is beautiful at the same time sinister, serious, both grave and delicate which certainly transports the viewers into an Interstellar limbo detached from the drudgery of every day existence. The score not only intensifies the premise but augments the drama. The story begins and unfolds in a floundering pace proceeding almost in a brooding fashion within the silhouette of dark and white overtones often barging into the internal memories of the lady protagonist’s dreams but manages to keep the audience deeply engrossed till the epic crescendo unravels like the conclusion of a grand opera.

Arrival is a science fiction film at its core yet it is so much more. Like any great work of literature or a painting is layered with tales of love, bonding, understanding, communication, humanity and most significantly the inner journey of an individual grappling with sorrow, loss, pain to a luminous realization of living life accepting all the challenges it has to offer and without altering the outcomes even if given a chance.

Arrival connects with audience not always in an entertaining fashion but often in a heartfelt thought provoking manner with a touch of warmth in it. Arrival has not only tinkered with minds of intelligent viewers but has touched a chord in the heart of every viewer. Within a limited budget it has been able to change the landscape of science fiction film conveying warmth affection and deep thoughts that is going to transform human lives for a really long time which I consider great achievement on its own, even if it fails to win most of the accolades for which the film has been nominated this year.

Rating: 4/5

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