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This eponomously-named film is based closely on cosmologist Carl Sagan's book. It handles big ideas with a fair degree of integrity and apart from Mathew McConaughey's rather pop-up performance as an unlikely Fundamentalist preacher friend of Ellie (Jodie Foster), is a realistic portrayal of what might just happen if we really did make contact with aliens. The only other films that handles this sort of material well (i.e. not like the comic-book Star Wars or Star Trek) is Kubrick's 2001 and, arguably, Aliens. Robert Zemeckis is associated with lighter fare (Back to the Future, Roger Rabbit) but here he allows Sagan's vision and challenging ideas to shine - albeit in a glossy Hollywood-ized wrap-around. And no, I don't buy John Hurt's mega-mogul character - but it's still a good device to stitch the film together and keep the action moving along. If you haven't seen CONTACT, it's a great ride - and marvel at the wonderful opening pull-back through space... truly inspirational and (really) awesome!
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