Arrival (2016) [4.5/5]

WHY ARE THEY HERE?

When mysterious spacecrafts touch down across the globe, an elite team - lead by expert linguist Louise Banks - is brought together to investigate whether they come in peace or are a threat. As mankind teeters on the verge of global war, Banks and the team race against time for answers - and to find them, she will take a chance that could threaten her life, and quite possibly humanity.

More filmmakers should (follow suit and) go full Tarkovsky in wide release form. Villeneuve had already proven himself to be one of the most versatile filmmakers in the medium -- as if we needed any more proof -- and it goes without saying that Bradford Young is a complete colossus with the camera.

Why didn't anybody warn me about Max Richter's 'On the Nature of Daylight' bookending the film? I can't even listen to that piece (in absence of a heartbreaking cinematic context) without tearing up; imagine what the introductory and concluding sequences herein did to me.

If you could see beyond the boundaries of your vision and comprehend the entire vastness of your environment -- all that is before you, beside you, behind you -- would you still traverse the same trail, or would you tour time through disparate doors?

-Eli Hayes