Me and my mother have had an interesting history in following Denis Villeneuve’s career so far. We had our first debate on his merits all the way back on our first episode and we settled some thoughts after seeing Sicario. And our stakes for him as a filmmaker would just get higher for his first science fiction film. So finally our episode on Arrival is ready.

We recorded this way back in January, but took a long break from our podcast and it stood on the shelf so to speak. This is good to keep in mind, because the time period is relevant to some of our topics. My mother is notably not a real sci-fi lover, so we go into how did this movie did the science fiction genre right for her. We talk about the original short story by Ted Chiang, dwell in the themes of the story and in general explore the masterful cinematic filmmaking.

Spoilers: I would highly recommend seeing Arrival without knowing anything about it. So do watch it first before listening.


  • [00:00] – Introduction
  • [10:15] – How Aharon saw the movie
  • [14:15] – Music
  • [16:30] – Sci-fi as an emotional drama
  • [20:45] – The cinematic drama
  • [27:00] – The short story (Story of Your Life)
  • [35:00] – Observing ourselves through aliens
  • [48:00] – The linguistic perspective of reality
  • [52:30] – Cinematography
  • [54:00] – Contact
  • [59:00] – The mystery
  • [1:05:00] – Something light at the end

Movies we mention