Okay, so there is one explosion in the new science fiction movie Arrival. But it’s a small part of the plot. The film is an intelligent look at alien First Contact and that’s a welcome respite from the multitude of marauding extraterrestrial flicks.
I won’t go into the plot. It’s an excellent movie and you should see it for yourself. Like the best alien First Contact movies it says a lot more about us than it does the aliens. Alien ships appear hovering above several countries across the globe. This leads to the fear of proximity. The ships don’t communicate at first and that leads to the fear of mysterious intentions. The process also leads to military control of First Contact in those countries, which in turn raises the issue of many different responses to First Contact by those nations. Will the countries work together or go their own way? Those are all important factors to consider in First Contact. The movie explains the alien reasoning for handling First Contact in such a dangerous way. But without the reasoning used by the aliens, the movie shows everything visiting extraterrestrials would not want to do. So many alien craft appearing on Earth leads to increased fears. The lack of clear and swift communication of intentions builds worry in the public and leads to unrest. And the method used by the aliens makes it necessary for the military to take control in each country.
No plot spoilers here. You will have to see the movie for the answer to why the aliens choose such an odd method. Lacking that reason, aliens with good intentions would be advised to do everything differently. Here are some tips:
-Send your intentions via some form of electronic communication and well ahead of the appearance of any space craft. Let humans know you are coming and that you are coming in peace.
-Beware of proximity threat. Land in a place that is not highly populated or near a military base.
-Keep it simple and easy for us to monitor. Only one spaceship at a time please.
-Communicate your intentions quickly to avoid paranoia on the part of humans.
-Don’t make nations compete against each other. Find a way to reach all nations at once and treat them equally.
-Learn our most used languages before you get here. There is no reason to say hello until you can communicate.
-Have a process for initial First Contact in mind and communicate it clearly. After that, let humans take charge. Humans should have a right to determine how a Direct First Contact scenario develops on planet Earth.