2-7-1 Contact

9 Feb

Over the weekend, I watched Contact, a movie that I have seen countless times. It is one of those films that I can watch over and over and never get tired of it. This could be for several reasons.

It is Science Fiction placed into the real world.

It portrays the conflict between science and religion.

It has a pre-Alright/Alright/Alright Matthew McConaughey playing the religious soul of the nation falling in love with Jodie Foster, the scientific mind of the nation.

It has one of the coolest Howard Hughes-type characters not named Howard Hughes.

It has a government cover-up.

The list could go on and on, but, in short, the movie has everything.

However, this post is not about any of that. It is about the closing scene.

Before the pictures fade to black and the credits roll, Jodie Foster is sitting on the rim of a canyon and contemplating all that has happened. As the camera scans, the radio antennas that picked up the transmission from space can be seen in the background.Jodie Foster Canyon

I always found the radio antennas fascinating and wanted to see them after my first viewing of the film. A few years ago, I got my wish and traveled to the Very Large Array, or VLA. It was cool to see the antennas stretch over the landscape. I took a bunch of pictures but could not find them. However, I did get a picture of the t-shirt that I bought.image-21

Oh yeah, one other thing was interesting. They bent over backwards to make sure we knew that SETI did not use the facility. I guess people go there thinking that Jodie Foster really got a message from space.

I write all of that to write this. There is not canyon at the VLA. When Jodie Foster sat at the rim of the canyon, she was somewhere else entirely, and I wanted to know where. With a short venture into the Internet Movie Database, I discovered that she was looking into Canyon de Chelly. As it turns out, I have also been there.West 2010 209

The VLA is in New Mexico.

Canyon de Chelly is in Arizona.

According to the GPS, they are 271 miles apart.

When people talk about Contact, they criticize her trip to the wormhole for being stupid. She traveled light years to run into her deceased dad. They are focusing on the wrong thing. The trip to Vega was amazing, but it was nowhere near as amazing as Jodie’s ability to be in two places at once.

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10 Responses to “2-7-1 Contact”

  1. Marilyn Armstrong February 9, 2015 at 21:07 #

    And since I never heard of it, but now I have, I will have to see if I can find it on cable or Netflix or something.

    • Rick February 9, 2015 at 21:58 #

      It’s an interesting film. You’ll have to tell me what you think.

      • Marilyn Armstrong February 9, 2015 at 22:00 #

        If I can find it! Netflix doesn’t have it (they never seem to have anything). Nor Prime. So we’ll just have to keep an eye open for it.

  2. Manu Sudhakar Kurup February 14, 2015 at 16:35 #

    It is also interesting to see how Mathew McConaughey started playing characters that are sceptical about religion after that… His speech about preachers in the HBO Series True Detective was very interesting.

    • Rick February 14, 2015 at 23:23 #

      We just watched True Detective a few weeks ago. It is an awesome show.

      • Manu Sudhakar Kurup February 15, 2015 at 02:59 #

        I’m on the fifth episode. 🙂

  3. Bill Frain March 6, 2015 at 01:12 #

    i just finished watching it for the billionth time…it looked like canyon de chelly to me…google mapped the vla, and didnt see a canyon nearby…then googled the canyon where she hears the message, and found this little thread! lol been all over n. az, and monument valley is my favorite spot, along with de chelly, page, and a certain canyon not named de chelly… 🙂

    • Rick March 6, 2015 at 02:16 #

      It is a great part of the country. Monument Valley is my favorite place, but I like the rest, as well. Bryce Canyon is awesome. Heck, the entire Four Corners area is awesome.

      Thanks for reading and for taking the time to comment.

  4. Cindy Bruchman March 6, 2015 at 14:34 #

    I liked Contact, too. The trip to Vega is one of my favorite scenes in cinematography. I agree the movie has it all. Nice post.

    • Rick March 6, 2015 at 15:44 #

      Thank you. I remember that there was a huge outcry about Vega being disappointing. I thought it was cool.

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