「Quotes」

作者:影视影评

这是我看过的所有科幻电影中最好的一部,因为其中没有挑战想象力的未来世界,没有邪恶或善良的外星人,也没有人离开地球。

Mention the term “science-fiction,” and stories by Jules Verne or Isaac Asimov might spring to your mind – seriously-written, carefully-structured times and spaces that are full of imagination, yet seem so reasonable, and therefore so real, to us. When it comes to science-fiction films, however, this effect could be different. As most would tend to agree, film’s biggest function is to entertain, and one of its greatest advantages compared to literature or paintings is that film can magnify the fantasy worlds by producing fast and sharp sounds and exciting visual effects. Therefore many science-fiction films are less attractive for their “science,” than for their “fiction.” And this is even more the case if we add a word, “Hollywood.” From Star Wars to Jurassic Park to King Kong, these big-budget box office hits never fail to entertain us with their extremely unusual plots and fancy special effects.

「CQ, CQ, this is W9GFO. Is anybody out there?」

宇宙中有外星人吗?我们在宇宙中是孤单的吗?你相信上帝存在吗?如果你相信,你能证明吗?上帝是人类创造出来以自欺欺人的吗?科学否认上帝的存在,但科学会不会被神化为另一个上帝?科学给人类带来了什么?它使人类更快乐还是更孤独?它提供了人类所渴求的生存意义了吗?科学探求的是什么?是真相吗?是“我们为什么在这儿?我们在这儿干什么?我们是谁?”之类问题的答案吗?找到了吗?什么是真正的科学精神?是怀疑一切没有证据的东西吗?信仰能解决问题吗?还是只是让你产生幻觉?真的“信则有,不信则无”吗?爱需要解释和证据吗?一个科学家有可能相信无法解释、没有证据的东西是真实的吗?

A Hollywood science-fiction film that doesn’t involve monsters, highly lethal diseases, or all-powerful robots of any kind seems to be quite a rarity. Such is the film Contact (1997), directed by Robert Zemeckis. Contact is about extraterrestrial, yet in this film not even a single “little green man” of any form appears on Earth, nor do UFOs or massive Alien invasions. Losing interest? Don’t make your mind up too hastily - for there is much more behind this story, and it might actually adjust our common perception regarding what a truly fine science-fiction film could be like.

「if it is just us... it seems like an awful waste of space.」   

看完这部电影,你对上述问题也许会有答案,也许仍然没有,但至少你有了一个新的视角。
 
精彩台词
Ellie Arroway: Look, all I'm asking is for you to just have the tiniest bit of vision. You know, to just sit back for one minute and look at the big picture. To take a chance on something that just might end up being the most profoundly impactful moment for humanity, for the history... of history.

Contact, based on the novel of the same title by American astronomer Carl Sagan, tells the story of a determined scientist who detects radio signals from deep space. Since her childhood, Dr. Eleanor Arroway (Jodie Foster) has believed that there must be life on other planets. Despite encountering resistance, she devotes her whole life to the search of extraterrestrial intelligence. She discovers a series of messages sent from outer space, and various issues emerge as the world struggles to determine how contact should be made. Conflict arises in determining the criteria for choosing a single person to represent the entire human race.

「You know, there are 400 billion stars out there, just in our galaxy alone. If only one out of a million of those had planets, all right, and if just one out of a million of those had life, and if just one out of a million of those had intelligent life, there would be literally millions of civilizations out there.」   

Palmer Joss: By doing this, you're willing to give your life, you're willing to die for it. Why?
Ellie Arroway: For as long as I can remember, I've been searching for something, some reason why we're here?. What are we doing here? Who are we? If this is a chance to find out even just a little part of that answer... I don't know, I think it's worth a human life. Don't you?

Typical ET movies often deal with themes concerning Aliens coming to Earth. Thus, they have imagined a variety of deceptions of dwarf-like, cat-like or reptile-human-like Aliens. But Contact doesn’t even need to worry about how to make the appearances of Aliens stand out; it has flipped our thoughts completely over. It asks: what if we don’t passively encounter Aliens on Earth, but instead we aggressively search for them from Earth? What if the Aliens don’t come to us, but instead they send us messages to help us go to them? As a result of such foundations, different from most films of the same genre, Contact is bound to differ in its main message as well. Rather than filling the story full with special effects and fantasies, it gets back to the ground and examines the behaviors and beliefs of mankind itself. It turns out that Contact is a science-fiction film that is more “science” than “fiction.”

「You wanna hear something really nutty? I heard of a couple guys who wanna build something called an airplane. You know, you get people to go in, and fly around like birds. It's ridiculous, right? And what about breaking the sound barrier, or rockets to the moon, or atomic energy, or a mission to Mars? Science fiction, right? Look, all I'm asking is for you to just have the tiniest bit of vision. You know, to just sit back for one minute and look at the big picture. To take a chance on something that just might end up being the most profoundly impactful moment for humanity, for the history... of history.」

Palmer Joss: I'm not against technology, doctor. I'm against the men who deify it at the expense of human truth.

Don’t be scared away when you hear the word “science,” though; there isn’t any complicated math formula calculations or professional glossaries, nor does the film require any deep scientific knowledge for you to understand and appreciate it. Contact is more “science” than “fiction” because the story is more carefully-written and more logically precise, compared to many other sci-fi blockbuster films. It is closer to real life. Therefore, it says more about ourselves than about Aliens.

  
「Eleanor Ann Arroway, born 25th August, 1964.」

Ellie Arroway: So what's more likely? That an all-powerful, mysterious God created the Universe, and decided not to give any proof of his existence? Or, that He simply doesn't exist at all, and that we created Him, so that we wouldn't have to feel so small and alone?

Perhaps where visual effects are most intensely-employed in this film is the opening scene, a slow pullback from the Earth to the end of the universe that lasts for several minutes. The combination of astronomical images taken by space telescopes and computer artworks shows the breath-taking beauty of our universe. And the rich-layered soundtrack lends more significance to the message this scene carries – as the Earth becomes further and further away, the historical audio broadcast from our planet gradually weakens, and finally becomes silence. This silence lasts for nearly one minute, and tends to make us ponder over how insignificant, and perhaps lonely, mankind is.

  
「Ironically, the thing people are most hungry for - meaning - is the one thing science hasn't been able to give them.」

Ellie Arroway: I... had an experience. I can't prove it, I can't even explain it, but everything that I know as a human being, everything that I am tells me that it was real. I was given something wonderful, something that changed me forever. A vision of the universe, that tells us undeniably, how tiny, and insignificant and how... rare, and precious we all are! A vision that tells us that we belong to something that is greater than ourselves, that we are *not*, that none of us are alone.

Obviously, such depiction of the universe might seem rather plain, or even boring, compared to opening scenes of movies like Star Wars. It does not involve fancy spacecrafts, nor are there laser blasts or chases or grunting. However, Contact illustrates the most realistic, even though not the most stirring, version of the universe. It makes use of special effects, not to intensify fantasy worlds, but to help offer queries and dilemmas concerning the real world.

「By doing this, you're willing to give your life, you're willing to die for it. Why?

 For as long as I can remember, I've been searching for something, some reason why we're here. What are we doing here? Who are we? If this is a chance to find out even just a little part of that answer... I don't know, I think it's worth a human life. Don't you?」

Ellie Arroway: I read your book.
Palmer Joss: Here we go.
Ellie Arroway: You want me to quote you? "Ironically, the thing people are most hungry for; meaning, is the one thing science hasn't been able to give them."
Palmer Joss: Yeah.
Ellie Arroway: It's like you're saying that science killed God. What if science simply revealed that He never existed in the first place?

Thus, if you are a Star Wars fan seeking exciting space adventures, or an ET enthusiast expecting to see giant UFOs hovering over Washington, it’s probably better to weigh the entertainment odds before watching Contact, for you might get disappointed by this more-science-than-fiction movie lacking flying saucers. In this film, the only evidence that tells the existence of extraterrestrial intelligence is a series of patterned radio signals received by telescopes on Earth, which is apparently less exciting than coming across a mysterious fallen UFO.

「Is the world fundamentally a better place because of science and technology? We shop at home, we surf the Web... at the same time, we feel emptier, lonelier and more cut off from each other than at any other time in human history...」

Ellie Arroway: [to a group of children] I'll tell you one thing about the universe, though. The universe is a pretty big place. It's bigger than anything anyone has ever dreamed of before. So if it's just us... seems like an awful waste of space. Right?

Yet, although Contact is perhaps not the most entertaining science-fiction film, it could well be the deepest one. For anyone who has, at times, wondered why we are here and whether we are alone in the universe, or what the meaning of life is, Contact is a great film to watch; it may enlighten your thoughts in some way, and might even change some of your perceptions for good. The universe is a pretty big place – bigger than anyone could have ever imagined. Just as the main character, Eleanor, expresses in the story: if there are just us, it would seem an awful waste of space. If you spare some time to watch Contact, it certainly will not be an awful waste of time.

  
「I know you must think this is all very unfair. Maybe that's an understatement. What you don't know is I agree. I wish the world was a place where fair was the bottom line, where the kind of idealism you showed at the hearing was rewarded, not taken advantage of. Unfortunately, we don't live in that world.

Funny, I've always believed that the world is what we make of it.」

Alien: See, in all our searching, the only thing we've found that makes the emptiness bearable is each other.

(以上为本学期课堂作业)

「I am OK to go.」

[Ellie challenges Palmer to prove the existence of God]
Palmer Joss: Did you love your father?
Ellie Arroway: What?
Palmer Joss: Your dad. Did you love him?
Ellie Arroway: Yes, very much.
Palmer Joss: Prove it.
 
难忘一幕:
Ellie Arroway坐在并未升空而是掉入水中的飞行器里穿越时空,见到她的父亲并和他交谈。    

===================

附上我最喜欢的一部分台词。

David Drumlin: I know you must think this is all very unfair. Maybe that's an understatement. What you don't know is I agree. I wish the world was a place where fair was the bottom line, where the kind of idealism you showed at the hearing was rewarded, not taken advantage of. Unfortunately, we don't live in that world.

Ellie Arroway: Funny, I've always believed that the world is what we make of it.


Executive: We must confess that your proposal seems less like science and more like science fiction.

Ellie Arroway: Science fiction. You're right, it's crazy. In fact, it's even worse than that, it's nuts. You wanna hear something really nutty? I heard of a couple guys who wanna build something called an airplane, you know you get people to go in, and fly around like birds, it's ridiculous, right? And what about breaking the sound barrier, or rockets to the moon? Atomic energy, or a mission to Mars? Science fiction, right? Look, all I'm asking is for you to just have the tiniest bit of vision. You know, to just sit back for one minute and look at the big picture. To take a chance on something that just might end up being the most profoundly impactful moment for humanity, for the history... of history.


[Ellie challenges Palmer to prove the existence of God]

Palmer Joss: Did you love your father?

Ellie Arroway: What?

Palmer Joss: Your dad. Did you love him?

Ellie Arroway: Yes, very much.

Palmer Joss: Prove it.


Ellie Arroway: So what's more likely? That a mysterious, all-powerful God created the Universe, and then decided not to leave a single evidence of his existence? Or that He simply doesn´t exist at all, and that we created Him, so that we wouldn't have to feel so small and lonely?


Palmer Joss: I'm not against technology, doctor. I'm against the men who deify it at the expense of human truth.


Ellie Arroway: Dad, do you think there's people on other planets?

Ted Arroway: I don't know, Sparks. But I guess I'd say if it is just us... seems like an awful waste of space.


XXX: You're an interesting species, an interesting mix. You're capable of such beautiful dreams and such horrible nightmares. You feel so lost, so cut off, so alone, only you're not. See, in all our searching, the only thing we've found that makes the emptiness bearable is each other.

「Why don't you simply withdraw your testimony, and concede that this "journey to the center of the galaxy," in fact, never took place!

Because I can't. I... had an experience... I can't prove it, I can't even explain it, but everything that I know as a human being, everything that I am tells me that it was real! I was given something wonderful, something that changed me forever... A vision... of the universe, that tells us, undeniably, how tiny, and insignificant and how... rare, and precious we all are! A vision that tells us that we belong to something that is greater then ourselves, that we are *not*, that none of us are alone! I wish... I... could share that... I wish, that everyone, if only for one... moment, could feel... that awe, and humility, and hope. But... That continues to be my wish.」

「As a person of faith I'm bound by a different covenant than Doctor Arroway. But our goal is one and the same: the pursuit of Truth. I for one believe her.」

「I'll tell you one thing about the universe, though. The universe is a pretty big place. It's bigger than anything anyone has ever dreamed of before. So if it's just us... seems like an awful waste of space. Right?」

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