Close Encounters of the Third Kind

From Academic Kids

Template:Infobox Movie Released on November 16, 1977, Close Encounters of the Third Kind is a science-fiction movie about UFOs, written and directed by Steven Spielberg. It stars Richard Dreyfuss, Franois Truffaut, Bob Balaban, Melinda Dillon, Teri Garr, and Cary Guffey. The movie has impressive visual effects by Douglas Trumbull and a distinctive score composed by John Williams.

Close Encounters was perhaps the most important science fiction movie to that point to introduce benign or even kind aliens, a sharp departure from the 'evil monster' style of most earlier films. It introduced a number of 'alien' motifs which have been recycled as fact into popular culture - alien abduction, small and thin aliens ("greys"), the style of UFOs as covered in lights rather than the disc shapes more popular in the 1950s and 1960s and so on.

The movie has been revised numerous times, notably for a 132-minute "special edition" reissue in 1980 and again for a 137-minute "collector's edition" in 1988. The Special Edition features several new character development scenes, the discovery of a lost ship in the Gobi desert, and a view of the inside of the mothership. The interior of the mothership is deleted from the Collector's Edition (Spielberg added this scene as a concession to be allowed to make the Special Edition. He decided it was a mistake and removed it in the later edition).

The movie plot has three basic threads. A group of Scientific researchers including Lacombe and Laughlin (Balaban) discover a lost squadron of World War II aircraft. Roy Neary (Dreyfuss) experiences a close encounter of the second kind and thereafter becomes obsessed with aliens, to the great dismay of his family. He begins making endless models of a distinctive plateau - a place he has never physically seen and is unfamiliar with. Elsewhere Jillian Guiler (Dillon) loses her son Barry (Guffey) to aliens in a weird light and electrical display at her home.

As Neary's increasingly bizarre conduct causes his family to abandon him, he sees the feature he has been modelling on a television news show. He and others with similar experiences obsessively head towards the site. He meets up with Guiler en route. Elsewhere in the world, the pace of alien activity is increasing. Claude Lacombe (a character based on Jacques Vallee, played by director Truffaut) investigates a host of weird occurrences along with other experts. The obsessives and the experts eventually meet up at Devils Tower in Wyoming for the final light show extravaganza.

J. Allen Hynek, a UFO researcher, makes a cameo appearance in the movie.


Spielberg was given an unprecedented budget of $20m (1977 dollars). However the film lacked the merchandising and sequel potential of "Star Wars" hence the drive to extract extra earnings by releasing 'Special Editions'.

A persistent but unsubstantiated rumor reports that when the film was screened for Ronald Reagan, he told Spielberg that "There are probably only six people in this room who know how true this is."[1] (

Template:Steven Spielberg's films

See also: The Day the Earth Stood Still, an early classic science fiction movie with benevolent aliensde:Unheimliche Begegnung der dritten Art fr:Rencontres du troisime type nl:Close Encounters of the Third Kind ja:未知との遭遇 es:Encuentros en la tercera fase


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