Arrival is a 2016 American science fiction drama film directed by Denis Villeneuve and written by Eric Heisserer. The film begins with a sequence of linguist Louise Banks with her daughter, who dies during childhood from cancer. Twelve extraterrestrial spacecraft (nicknamed "shells") appear across the Earth. Louise is asked by US Army Colonel Weber to join a team to find out why they have come. Accompained by theoretical physicist Ian Donnelly, Louise makes contact with two seven-limbed cephalopod-like aliens, which they call "heptapods", and Ian nicknames them Abbott and Costello. Louise discovers that the aliens use a written language of complicated circular symbols, which enables communication given that their sounds are impossible to translate. They begin to learn the symbols that correspond to a basic vocabulary. As Louise becomes more proficient in the language, she starts to see images of herself with her daughter. When Louise is able to ask what the aliens want, they answer: "offer weapon". Similar translations ("use weapon") are deduced at other sites, leading other nations to close down communications, and some to scramble their military believing the message indicates a threat. However, Louise thinks that "weapon" might have an alternative translation such as "tool."