It would appear that this project as written and directed by Michael Madsen (not the actor but another Michael Madsen) tried to give a rather dry, unemotional, but intellectual extrapolation of what our world might look like if and when our civilization came in contact with an arriving galactic intelligence. I’ve even watched a few snippets of it online (it’s up for free with ads on YouTube.com). While I found it an interesting diversion, I’m still not sure that – as a somewhat fictionalized proposition – it works as well as it could. I will add that such circumstances as aliens arriving on Earth has long been the province of some great minds who’ve produced some incredible fictional accounts – from 1953’s The War Of The Worlds to 2016’s Arrival – so let’s agree that Mr. Madsen had an uphill battle from the outset.
Here's the premise as provided by the good people at IMDB.com:
“This documentary-style film shows how government agencies try to cope with human mankind’s first contact with alien life.”
A quick perusal of the cast listing suggests that Madsen did go to great lengths to bring in a variety of specialists from government and academia to discuss the potential reality of such extraordinary circumstances, and – in my own opinion – I suppose it’s grand to get a different perspective on potential first contact. Certainly, establishing once and for all that we’re not alone in the vast, vast universe would create some chaos socially, psychologically, and spiritually; and likely in these areas that the feature teaches us more about ourselves than it ever does another civilization.
To the film’s credit, The Visit garnered a good amount of praise – but no wins – while appearing on the film festival circuit, with audiences at the DocAviv Film Festival, the Hamptons International Film Festival, the Moscow International Film Festival, and more being understandably fascinated with it.
As always, thanks for reading … and live long and prosper!