E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982)

Movie Info

Movie Info

Steven Spielberg
Run Time
1 hour and 55 minutes

VP Content Ratings

Sex & Nudity

(extended version)

Rated: PG. Running time: 1 hour 55 min.

 Our content rating (0-10): Violence-1; Language-2; Sex/Nudity-1.

Our star rating (0-5): 5

 At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, ‘Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?’ 2He called a child, whom he put among them, 3and said, ‘Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.

Matthew 18:1-3

The children stare in wonder and amazement at their little extra-terrestrial friend. (c) 1982 Universal Pictures


My idea of a great film is one that not only continues to arouse with each viewing primal feelings of awe and wonder, joy and sorrow that transport us to its own special world, but also offers a new discovery with each repeat showing. Steven Spielberg’s “LT.” is such a film, and the 20th Anniversary theatrical release gives us a chance to see it on a big screen again.

Yes, the added scene in the bath all room is a delight, as are the en hanced digital effects, but the film was a great theatrical experience even without these. This time around I appreciated John Williams’ perfectly matched music the more, and also was more sensitive to the back story of the recent divorce that makes Elliott’s all the more poignant.

It is also worth noting that Spielberg seems to share Jesus’ delight in the openness and wonder of children. Elliott and Gertie are the ones who discover the little alien. The adults are either too busy with their preoccupations to notice him—didn’t you love their Mom just missing seeing him? There are some adults who are hunting E.T., but they are not interested in establishing a relationship with him, as the children are. They want to “study” him as they would a rare specimen of animal—“for science.”

I love also the parallel with the Peter Pan story that Mary reads to Gertie, right down to the girl’s desperate wish that E.T. could live when he dies. And that joy on their faces, beginning with Elliott’s almost disbelieving cry “He’s alive!” as he rushes to the funeral capsule-how much like the cry of those women who fled from the empty tomb on the first Easter. There’s humor mixed in, too, with brother Michael hitting his head on a tent bar as he also exclaims, “He’s alive!” And only the big screen and full Dolby sound can do justice to the two bike flights. “E.T.” is what movies at their could best are all about!

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