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Adapted from the Carl Sagan novel of the same name, Zemeckis’ film is a landmark in the big-budget Hollywood sci-fi realm for its in-depth focus on a female researcher and reluctant astronaut, Dr. Ellie Arroway (Jodie Foster in a career-best role), as well as its relentless insistence on asking broad questions about the nature of existence. Ellie, who has devoted her life to the search for extraterrestrial life, lives a lonely professional and personal life, but when a seemingly random transmission from the stars comes through—after years of waiting—she must directly face that which seemed impossible. An alternately terrifying, breathtaking, and technically-inventive look into one woman’s journey into the unknown, Contact “tells the smartest and most absorbing story about extraterrestrial intelligence since Close Encounters of the Third Kind.”—Roger Ebert.

Genres: Sci-Fi

Other Films by Robert Zemeckis

Who Framed Roger Rabbit?

A private dick (played with gruff sincerity by the late Bob Hoskins), whose life has been ruined by ’toons, is forced to harbor a wacky rabbit superstar on the run in this live-action/animation hybrid that’s a rollicking send-up of film noir tropes, beginning with blackmail and leading to takes on the wrong man plot and