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Contact (1997)

Trailer
0:32 | Trailer
Dr. Ellie Arroway, after years of searching, finds conclusive radio proof of extraterrestrial intelligence, sending plans for a mysterious machine.

Director:

Robert Zemeckis

Writers:

James V. Hart (screenplay by), Michael Goldenberg (screenplay by) | 3 more credits »
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Popularity
1,332 ( 311)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 14 wins & 30 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jena Malone ... Young Ellie
David Morse ... Ted Arroway
Jodie Foster ... Eleanor Arroway
Geoffrey Blake ... Fisher
William Fichtner ... Kent
Sami Chester Sami Chester ... Vernon (as SaMi Chester)
Timothy McNeil ... Davio
Laura Elena Surillo Laura Elena Surillo ... Cantina Woman
Matthew McConaughey ... Palmer Joss
Tom Skerritt ... David Drumlin
Henry Strozier ... Minister
Max Martini ... Willie (as Maximilian Martini)
Larry King ... Larry King
Thomas Garner Thomas Garner ... Ian Broderick
Conroy Chino Conroy Chino ... KOB-TV Reporter
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Storyline

Astronomer Dr. Ellie Arroway has long been interested in contact to faraway lands, a love fostered in her childhood by her father, Ted Arroway (David Morse), who died when she was nine-years-old, leaving her orphaned. Her current work in monitoring for extraterrestrial life is based on that love and is in part an homage to her father. Ever since funding from the National Science Foundation (N.S.F.) was pulled on her work, which is referred to some, including her N.S.F. superior David Drumlin (Tom Skerritt), as more science fiction than science, Ellie, with a few of her rogue scientist colleagues, have looked for funding from where ever they could get it to continue their work. When Ellie and her colleagues hear chatter originating from the vicinity of the star Vega, Ellie feels vindicated. But that vindication is short lived when others, including politicians, the military, religious leaders, and other scientists, such as Drumlin, try to take over her work. When the messages received ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Get ready for human's biggest discovery ever! See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for some intense action, mild language and a scene of sensuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The opening of the movie is one long take, with the camera showing Earth, moving back away to show Mars, the rest of the planets, the solar system, the Milky Way, galaxies, super galaxies, and finally the entire universe, closing it with a head-shot of young Ellie. The same idea was used in Men In Black (1997), but the scene is changed to stop in the Milky Way, depicting it as a little marble of a gigantic alien being. In 2004, The Simpsons (1989) paid tribute to this scene repeating it in the Couch Gag, in The Simpsons: The Ziff Who Came to Dinner (2004). In it, after showing the entire universe, galaxies were turned in atoms, DNA chains, and cells, with the camera finally exiting from Homer's head. See more »

Goofs

At various points, Ellie and her colleagues use professional audio equipment that has no relation to what they're doing. After Drummond's funeral, Ellie increases the audio volume of the still-running signal by rotating the encoder knob of an Eventide DSP4000 Ultra-Harmonizer. The knob doesn't provide that function in that application. The machine is placed on stack of two different kinds of multitrack recorders (two from Alesis, two from Tascam) that also don't serve any purpose aside from displaying identical rows of level indicators of the same signal. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Young Ellie: CQ, this is W9GFO. CQ, this is W9GFO here. Come back?
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Crazy Credits

"For Carl" See more »

Connections

Referenced in Mystery Science Theater 3000: Devil Doll (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Spirit In The Sky
Written and Performed by Norman Greenbaum
Courtesy of Trans/Tone Productions, Inc.
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User Reviews

 
Diamond in the Rough
26 June 2003 | by ada-pSee all my reviews

So many movies out there are pure drivel. They use sex, or shock, or sex to sell two hours of something that in no way contributes to our existence; be it inspiration, knowledge or spiritual awakening.

Contact is an exceptional example of a movie that DESERVES to exist. From the spectactular beginning shot that shows us just how small we are in a world that once thought the universe was made for, and around, mankind; to its realistic conclusion that any X-Phile would expect to happen: this movie appeals to our humanity, intelligence and sense of adventure.

One of the greatest realisations that the movie will guide you to is that what we search for in outer space is actually in our own backyards. We are cut off from each other and sci-fi tries to quell our loneliness with ideas that we'll meet E.T. and wont feel so lonely in our existence. But were AREN'T alone... we have each other.

I never get tired of watching this movie, though I wish they brought out a packed special edition DVD full of behind the scene effects and the like.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish | German | Russian

Release Date:

11 July 1997 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Contact See more »

Filming Locations:

Mojave Desert, Arizona, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$90,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$20,584,908, 13 July 1997

Gross USA:

$100,920,329

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$171,120,329
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
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