Jenny Haydon is sitting at her home by a lake, drinking a glass of wine and watching a family movie of her husband, Scott and Jenny, while they were camping and singing old songs. She looks very sad and we learn a bit later that Scott had died in a car accident the year before.
When Jenny is asleep after a great deal of wine, a space ship lands in the lake and Starman sees the lights in her house and enters. He sees the movie of Scott and has an idea to imitate him, then sees a photo album with locks of his hair. Starman uses these locks to form himself in Scott's image.
When Jenny is awakened, she sees Starman as he is morphing into Scott and then become Scott's image. Not knowing what to expect, he has learned the language from the film and from TV. He tells her he won't hurt her. Then he gets a message that his mission won't accomplish it's goal and he has to me at meteor crater in Arizona in three days or he will die.
The movie is about Jenny and Scott building up a relationship and their trip to Arizona. Obstacles are placed in their way and one of the sweetest moments is when they stop at an all night diner. A hunter has just killed a deer and Jenny and Scott park next to his car. Scott asks why the animal was killed and later brings it back to life.
Jeff Bridges plays the role of Scott and does a fine job of learning how to be a human and asking Jenny questions about things like "define love." He was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actor.