Reviewed by: Richard Fangrad
What does the Bible say about intelligent life on other planets?
Are we alone in the universe?
Does Scripture refer to life in space?
Questions and answers about the origin of LIFE
How can we know there’s a God? Answer
What if the cosmos is all that there is? Answer
If God made everything, who made God? Answer
Is Jesus Christ God? Answer
Answers about RELIGIONS
Sexual lust outside of marriage—Why does God strongly warn us about it?
Purity—Should I save sex for marriage?
Marriage Obsolete?—Is formalized marriage becoming obsolete?
Many people seem convinced that traditional marriages don’t work and that this practice should be abandoned. What does the Bible say about marriage?
Jodie Foster … Ellie Arroway
Matthew McConaughey … Palmer Joss
John Hurt … S.R. Hadden
James Woods … Michael Kitz
Angela Bassett … Rachel Constantine
Rob Lowe … Richard Rank
Tom Skerritt … David Drumlin
David Morse … Ted Arroway
William Fichtner … Kent
Jena Malone … Young Ellie
Jake Busey … Joseph
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South Side Amusement Company
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|Distributor||Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company|
With the recent landing of the “Pathfinder” spacecraft on Mars, the celebration of a supposed UFO crash at Roswell, New Mexico 50 years ago, and a string of movies about visitors from other planets in recent years, more and more people are questioning whether we are “alone” in the universe.
“Contact” is based on the late Carl Sagan’s 1985 novel of the same name. Dr. Ellie Arroway (Jodie Foster), a scientist with the SETI program (Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence) searches the stars for intelligent life by renting time on huge radio telescopes and listening to the radio frequency energy coming from those distant stars for any signal that might be “non-random”. She’s looking for a signal that carries information. One day, she gets one. Her team quickly springs into action, recording and beginning to decipher the message. Before long the whole world is caught up in the excitement. Eventually it is revealed the massive amount of information is in the form of blueprints for an immense space/time travel machine for one human. Who gets to go, is decided at the highest levels of government. There’s no real surprises in the plot until near the end… and I won’t give that away.
Robert Zemeckis (“Forrest Gump,” “Who Framed Roger Rabbit?,” “Back To The Future”) directs. As is now expected with his films, the special effects are amazing, especially the opening sequence. The acting by all of the main cast is superb and the story does an adequate job of keeping us interested in what’s happening to the characters.
Despite the high quality of the moviemaking there are some very serious negatives from a Biblical/Christian point of view. Some things are obvious: occasional swearing and taking the Lord’s name in vain throughout the movie, implied extra-marital sex and the idea that science has proved that God doesn’t exist.
By far the most disturbing thing about this movie are the countless, subtle anti-Christian ideas. Christian’s are, once again portrayed, many times throughout the movie, as not having answers. A young Ellie was kicked out of Sunday School when the teacher couldn’t tell her where Cain got his wife. (See Genesis 4:16 and 5:4 for the answer) Once again we are told that science and religion don’t mix. While this is generally a true statement, it is not true of Christianity. Many of the Founding Fathers of science were Bible-believing creationists. Issac Newton, for example wrote more Biblical commentaries than scientific papers!
We are told that God has left us no hint of his existence. Romans 1:19-20 says that there’s so much evidence for the existence of God in His Creation that non-believers are without excuse! There are many more example’s which could be cited and discussed. Many are subtle, others are obvious. Evolution is, of course, implied. The reasoning is that if the conditions are right elsewhere in the universe, life will evolve, just like it supposedly did on Earth.
Movies can be powerful teaching tools. The combination of stunning visuals and emotional music and sound alone can bring the script writer’s and director’s message across without ever appealing to the truth. “Contact” works, and is very convincing, on an emotional level. Many people, including Christians who are not prepared, will be influenced by the ideas presented in it.
Ellie is willing to die to find an answers to some of the big questions like, “Why are we here?,” “What’s the meaning of life?” She expects to find these from aliens. A sentence that is repeated three times during the movie is, “If it is just us, it seems like an awful waste of space.” How ironic that the truth is that we are not alone in the universe. While the Bible makes it clear that we are the only intelligent life form, we are not alone! There’s God! The Creator, and He’s chosen to reveal himself through the Creation and through the Bible. The Bible tells us the answers to those big questions and many others.
I would only recommend this movie to Christians with a solid grasp of Biblical truth and the ability to discern the truth from a lie no matter how subtle the lie might be. For those Christians who don’t fall into this category… learn to discern, study the Scriptures and go see this movie with a Christian friend who is able to pick out the lies.
To learn more about extraterrestrial life from a biblical perspective, see:
See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.
What is the SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD? Answer
What is “THE FEAR OF THE LORD”? and Why is it important? Answer
What is HUMILITY? and WHY is it important to be humble? Answer
About God’s love and an answer to the questions: What is the true nature of God’s love? Is it biblically accurate to say, “God hates the SIN, but loves the SINNER”?