Monday, 2 December 2013

The Arrival: Ho-Hum-Hokum … !

2nd December, 2013.
You know, last month was a bit of a git.

No, really … !

As you’ve possibly know — by hitting the aerial tag at the bottom of the page — the communal aerial in my building: and took a week to get repaired.

The job’s still not finished: there are — to the best of my current knowledge — still three flats with no Sky signal.

What’s more … ?

What’s more, during that week, I seriously caned my broadband allowance: using the BBC’s catch-up service, the BBC iPlayer.   With the net result that I was seriously close to incurring extra charges, for going over that limit.

That close-run thing … ?

Meant I didn’t actually use the little credit I had left on my iTunes account: that would DEFINITELY have put me over the edge.

Until last night, that it.   The limit gets reset, every month.

That reset meant I could happily download a rental movie, without paying any extra.

And, given I fancied watching a film: one not dictated by simply what I had on an external drive, OR was on a catch-up service, or my shelf … ?

Well, I went ahead and rented a flick.

If you hadn’t guessed from the poster, the 1996, David Twohy directed, The Arrival.

And, yes … I think ‘hokum’ is possibly the word … 


The Arrival sees Charlie Sheen as Zane Zaminsky, a radio astronomer who — whilst talking simultaneously to his girlfriend on the phone, and a colleague sitting next to him — starts receiving a signal: from the star, Wolf 336, and seemingly from an intelligent life form.

It’s only when he reports this to his boss — Phil Gordian, played by Ron Silver — that he get’s fired: and, whilst working as a satellite tv installer, finds himself slowly being blacklisted by other telescopes.

That’s when his problems REALLY start … !


Now,. I was saying about hokum … ?

Yes … I think I can safely say The Arrival really is a load of old hokum: the plot does seem to kangaroo down the road like a learner driver, the script seems workable, if not stunning, and bar Charlie Sheen, the acting’s craftsman-like, rather than RSC.

Actually … ?

Charlie does manage to describe himself as ‘looking like a can of smashed arseholes’, at one point: which worked a lot better than some lines.   And summed up his performance quite well … … 

Saying that … ?

Saying that, I do know this.

The Arrival is actually surprisingly entertaining hokum.   Just don’t expect much*!
The Arrival

*        No, really, don’t expect much!   Saying that … ?   There’s a scene where Sheen descends into the aliens underground base: that got me thinking that possibly the films makers had been reading Dante’s Inferno and wanted to do a sci-fi retelling.

Alien Secrets

The Arrival

And the film also has some interesting ways of cleaning a place up … 

Oy, vey … 

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