If you ever get the chance, have a quick browse of books about aliens. There’s a whole cottage industry of ‘factual’ books about alien conspiracies, visitations and bizarre theories. It’s an equally popular subject in films but most of the alien encounters normally turn out pretty badly. There’s been much speculation around Roswell, cattle mutilation and sightings throughout history but Michael Madsen’s documentary, The Visit: An Alien Encounter, looks at what would happen should Earth ever be paid a visit by extra terrestrials.

For the best part of a century we’ve been broadcasting radio signals into space to announce our existence to anyone who may be listening. Should we ever get any visitors, language barriers would not be the only issues around first contact. How do we present the achievements and atrocities of humankind? How do we deal with the issues of contamination and disease? The Visit: An Alien Encounter covers every aspect using interviews and demonstrations from those whose responsibility it would be.

Madsen amasses a plethora of experts to look at every aspect of first contact. These range from military personnel to scientists and philosophers. It’s a fascinating insight into the machinery and processes which are in place to deal with such an eventuality. The Visit: An Alien Encounter is a documentary for anyone who has the curiosity and imagination to look into the heavens and wonder.

The Visit: An Alien Encounter is released on DVD by Metrodome on Monday.