Close Encounters of the Third Kind (United States, 1977)
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Close Encounters of the Third Kind review – Spielberg's spectacular returns to Earth
Richard Combs Updated: 4 March Having cleared or bypassed the rational ground, Spielberg is free to concentrate on the magic — the gift of both moviemakers and extraterrestrial superbeings. For starters, you get out of the ocean. And then maybe you look up. One three-men-and-an-apex-predator hit later, he was a hot Hollywood director who had folks ready to sign on for whatever he did next. The result both delighted his patrons — Fox had opened a space opera earlier that year, hence the company was thrilled to have their own science fiction movie on deck — and worried them, given this expensive project was supposed to have come out the previous summer before production problems caused delays.
Now, the film was going to make or break the nearly bankrupt studio. Screenings kept selling out.
Their confidence had been restored thanks to these two reconnaissance runs. Now it was time to land the mothership. And seen four decades after it first hit theaters en masse, Close Encounters now feels like an incredibly pivotal American movie — the bridge between the intimate, grungy movies of the Seventies and the spectacular eye-candy blockbusters of the Eighties. More on that in a minute. What you might not remember, however, are the atmospheric things that Spielberg scatters throughout the movie, the ones that add immensely to its texture. Most of us had probably forgotten that the film starts in the Sonora desert in Mexico, with barely visible figures wandering through dust storms — the same sort of feint that The Exorcist used by kicking off at an archeological dig in Iraq before getting around to the head-spinning money shots.
Close Encounters of the Third Kind
Meanwhile an international group of scientists led by French expert Claude Lacombe Francois Truffaut search for a breakthrough in human-alien communication. Their collective quest culminates in a remote Wyoming rendezvous and an event of unequalled importance in all of human history. Director: Steven Spielberg. Genre s : Adventure , Sci-Fi , Drama. Rating: PG. Runtime: min. See All Details and Credits.
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Critic Reviews. The Hollywood Reporter - Arthur Knight. The visuals here It is also to Spielberg's credit, however, that despite all of this visual opulence, his actors are never dwarfed. Read full review. ReelViews - James Berardinelli. Close Encounters of the Third Kind is unquestionably a great movie. Chicago Sun-Times - Roger Ebert.
It's one of the great moviegoing experiences. Washington Post - Gary Arnold. It must weather some bummy mid-passage exposition, but the movie survives its flaws triumphantly, evolving into a uniquely transporting filmgoing spectacle.
Los Angeles Times - Charles Champlin. It is a warm celebration, positive and pleasurable. The humor is folksy and slapstick rather than cerebral, as if to confirm that our encounter is with a populist vehicle. Variety - A. Steven Spielberg's film climaxes in final 35 minutes with an almost ethereal confrontation with life forms from another world; the first minutes, however, are somewhat redundant in exposition and irritating in tone. User Score. Write a Review. User Reviews. This is definitely in my top 20 favorite movies!