Every once in a while you see a film that just floors you. A film that has an incredible story, exceptional performances, amazing visuals, and just does everything right. While I’d love to say Hollywood releases tons of movies like this, the truth is, they don’t. Usually even great movies that are enjoyed in the moment are quickly forgotten about. But that wasn’t the case after I saw Denis Villeneuve’s sci-fi drama Arrival. As I walked around after the screening I kept thinking about the story and what it meant. I even woke up the following day thinking about certain scenes. That’s when I knew I’d seen something special and since that screening I’ve been telling everyone I know you need to see this film. Trust me, you want to see Arrival this weekend.
If you’re not familiar with the film, it’s based on the Ted Chiang short story Story of Your Life and revolves around a linguist (Amy Adams) who is recruited to assist in confronting an alien species that has landed on Earth. Ships appear over a number of areas all around the world, but humanity has no means of communicating with the species in order to find out what they want. Adams’ character, alongside a mathematician played by Jeremy Renner, sets out to find a way to talk with the aliens. The film also stars Forest Whitaker and Michael Stuhlbarg.
With the film opening this weekend, a few days ago I sat down with Jeremy Renner to talk about making one of the best films of 2016. He talked about how he emotionally fell apart after seeing the film, how everybody connects to something different in the film, what he added to his character that wasn’t on the page, collaborating with Villeneuve and cinematographer Bradford Young, and provided updates on Mission: Impossible 6 and Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers 4.