Arrival

The rain came down lightly, and all I wanted to do was get through one last day of work for the week.  I felt really hungry.  I returned home to have some spaghetti, and then I went out to the theatre to see “Arrival.”  I could relate to the empty classroom at the beginning of the movie, especially at this time of year, at the end of another semester.  I thought that on one Oscars program, Amy Adams said that she never went to college, and here she is as a language expert.  “Arrival” had some of the feeling of an old time science fiction movie like “The Day That Shook the World,” or maybe an episode of The Twilight Zone or The Outer Limits.  The aliens arrive in vessels that look like shells, although I thought of them as giant contact lenses.  Twelve of them show up at different locations around the world, like jurors or maybe zodiac signs.  Amy has the communication knowledge and Jeremy Renner has the scientific knowledge.  The aliens don’t communicate verbally, and they’re not your Steve Spielberg extraterrestrials.  I kept thinking that if they’re so smart, then they should be able to communicate with us clearly, kind of like George C. Scott getting through to the dolphins in “The Day of the Dolphin.”  Somehow, I wasn’t shocked that the Chinese would play a part in the action at the end because of the marketing strategy into China.  I was getting tired of this Louise Banks character by the end.  This one woman could understand what the aliens were saying, and she could see the future and was ready to practically single-handedly save the world.  It seemed too much for even a science-fiction movie.  I thought “District 9” was a better movie.  Forest Whitaker was a military man, and it felt like I’d seen him play this part before.  When the lights went up, an elderly woman looked at me rising from my seat, and she asked me if I understood the movie at all.  She said she didn’t understand any of it.  In the past, I’ve always thought of “Arrival” as the title of an ABBA album.  I watched the Partridge Family episode “Aspirin at 7, Dinner at 8.”  It looked like Laurie was eating a piece of cake in one scene, but I didn’t actually see the cake go into her mouth.  I also saw the NUMB3RS episode “Cause and Effect,” which was the series finale.  I have to switch to a different TV series for Friday nights for a while.  Some of the people who died on December 10 include Otis Redding (1967), Ed Wood (1978), Jascha Heifetz (1987), Rick Danko (1999), and Richard Pryor (2005).  Today is a birthday for Kenneth Branagh (56) and Susan Dey (64).

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