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Customer Review

26 of 29 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Genuinely uplifting piece of hokum, 20 Dec. 2000
This review is from: Contact (Special Edition) [1997] [DVD] (DVD)
Overall an excellent, intelligent film with good performances. The other reviews have concentrated on the opening sequence which is nice but a bit obvious visually - but the sound tracking back through time and eventually switching off is a great touch). But the virtuoso performance technically has to be the scene with the young girl running for the medicine cabinet - an apparently innocuous scene but watch it again and try to figure out how they could have done it - the whole scene appears to have been shot through a mirror which is fixed to the bathroom wall, yet starts downstairs and travels upstairs and into the bathroom in one continuous shot. It's a shot Hitchcock would have been proud of and it's always good to see a commercial director showing that he still has some artistic sensibilities and can do more than paint by the numbers. Sometimes the ethical elements of the plot are laid on with a trowel, and John Hurt is far too hammy and out of place from the general atmosphere of the film to be anything other than an annoyance but Jodie Foster gives a strong central performance and the movie hangs together nicely by the end. The arguments about spirituality against science are somewhat contrived but that does little to detract from a genuinely uplifting and inspiring story. Great to see a piece of science fiction that actually treats its viewers as intelligent human beings who can perhaps understand a plot that goes beyond boy rescuing Californian beach volleyball princess from evil emperor while retrieving mysterious plastic crystal and saving the world. Watch it, and restore your faith in earthlings.
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Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 14 Oct 2009 23:23:40 BDT
Last edited by the author on 14 Oct 2009 23:25:26 BDT
P. McDermott says:
I bought Contact a long while back and stumbled on your review yesterday. I rewatched the film tonight and I can't believe I've never noticed the scene with young Ellie running to get the medecine from the mirror before. It's an extremely clever shot. If it was camera vfx, it's seemless. I think, giving when the film was made, it is more likely to be a physical effect of some kind. Great pick up though. I still love this film. It fills me with awe when I watch it, when Ellie speaks of how many stars are in our galaxy and how many galaxies there are, it's a very convincing premise to get you to believe there may be life out there. A very accomplished and thought provoking science fiction film with many great performances on many levels.
Thanks for your review G. Russell
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