For a movie with aliens but almost no action and no villain, Arrival manages to be engaging – this alone is no small feat.  Stories that invent their own languages with a certain level of complexity tend to be exceptionally good, such as The Lord of the Rings and Star Trek, Arrival is no exception.  The alien language in Arrival even forms a visual representation of the alien perspective of something important with no start and end.  This brilliant idea, together with the emotional core and the emotional payoff at the end makes this movie successful.  It will go down in history as one of the most important sci-fi dramas.