Thought-provoking (if overlong) drama rather than sci-fi spectacular (though it has its fair share of special effects). Radio astronomer Dr. Ellie Arroway (Foster) discovers signals being transmitted from the distant star Vega. When they're deciphered, the signals turn out to be blueprints for a craft that will take its occupant into space and a first meeting with aliens. Ellie fights to become that first spokesperson for Earth's inhabitants. More philosophical than the usual sci-fi alien encounter epic, but the excellent cast, led by Foster, pulls it off nicely. Based on the novel by Carl Sagan.
Warner Home Video, Inc., 5775 Linder Canyon Rd., Westlake Village, CA 91362, URL: http://whv.warnerbros.com, Remarks: Does not handle retail queries from consumers; contact your local video distributor.
Available on VHS, DVD
Running time 150 minutes.
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