Remember, how you’ve seen this one all by yourself in the middle of a 400 seat, empty cinema theatre. Remember how sound pushed the image closer. Remember how it felt like Terrence Mallik suddenly turned to science-fiction.
Remember how Marko completely hated the thing, and wanted Villeneuve to die for meddling the love story into the narrative.
Arrival is built around an idea, a fresh hypothesis, and this makes it finally a sci-fi film worthy of the possibilities of its genre. The premise is that the language you speak has a determinant role in people’s habits, in their way of regarding life and ultimately their destiny. Funny enough? It continues to thinking of language as dimension in itself, one you could ride on like a vehicle, to move you through time. All this unfolding while trying to contact 12 alien ships, gently hovering over different places on Earth.
From the imbd wiki: “"Dirty Sci-fi" is what director Denis Villeneuve and cinematographer Bradford Young called the look they created together for Arrival (2016). Villeneuve wanted it to feel like “This was happening on a bad Tuesday morning, like when you were a kid on the school bus on a rainy day and you’d dream while looking out the window at the clouds."”
By adding a secondary (or main) narrative concerning love and loss, the story transcends its genre, becoming a mystery sci-fi revolutionary love story.