Michael Madsen
The Visit
Part of
The Visit

The Visit

Michael Madsen

83 min.
Subtitles: Catalan and Spanish

“This film documents an event that has never taken place – man’s first encounter with intelligent life from space.”



Michael Madsen
Executive Production
Lise Lense-Møller
DocsBarcelona Distribution
Magic Hour Films
Heikki Färm
Nathan Nugent, Stefan Sundlöf

Earth may not have been visited by aliens, but ever since the invention of radio and television, humans have been sending signals into outer space, announcing their existence to other civilizations, so the question is not ‘what if’ it happens, but rather ‘when’. With unprecedented access to everyone from the Director of the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs to experts from NASA, ISU (International Space University), the SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) Institute, and military advisors, the film builds up a chillingly believable scenario of first contact on Earth, beginning with the simplest of questions: Why are you here? How do you think? What do you see in humans that we don’t see in ourselves? The implications unfold within a mind-bending landscape of everyday sights and sounds turned bizarre and extraordinary, as if seen through the eyes of a life form exploring our planet for the first time. Acclaimed film director, Michael Madsen, takes viewers on a journey beyond their terrestrial perspective and into the unknown, revealing the fears, hopes, and rituals of a species forced not only to confront alien life forms that may or may not view us as a threat, but also its own self image and the most difficult questions of all: “Who are we?”

About the direction
Michael Madsen

Michael Madsen


Michael Madsen is a conceptual artist and director of the multiple award-winning “Into Eternity” (20...

Awards and festivals

Sitges Film Festival
Spain, 2015
Hot Docs
Canada, 2015
USA, 2015
USA, 2015
Visions du Reel
Switzerland, 2015
Michael Madsen
The Visit
Watch the trailer
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An amused but never mocking look at how we would handle things if beings from another planet landed on Earth.

— Guardian

At first feels like a bizarre exercise in conjecture or a brainstorming session for fiction writers, but it turns into a provocative and moving philosophical inquiry.

— Los Angeles Times

Filled with sleek and often surreal imagery, "The Visit" is served at a cool temperature; it fluctuates from fascinating to banal depending on the logistics under discussion.

— Variety
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