However, the trailer misses out one very and disturbing piece of information. That is; that Aurora wasn't woken by accident. Jim was awoken by accident, but decided that rather than spend his life alone on board the vessel he would selfishly, and somewhat creepily, deliberately awaken Auroro in the full knowledge that he was denying her her desire to settle on the new world with the rest of the passengers and crew, and effectively sentencing her to a long and lonely death, just so she can keep him company.
The movie then, rather than being a love story set aboard a malfunction space craft which our plucky heroes must somehow repair in order to not only save themselves, but also the other 5000 sleeping people on board, is actually a creepy and uncomfortable story about an abuser and his victim. It should in fact more accurately have been called Stockholm Syndrome in Space.
Once Aurora finds out that Jim has awoken her deliberately she is apoplectic with rage, informing him that he has effectively murdered her as she will die before their ship will arrive. The viewer has the utmost sympathy with Aurora and her plight, and perhaps it would have been interesting to see how Jim dealt with his remorse at his selfish actions, and how Aurora coped being trapped on a ship for the rest of her life with her own murderer.
Instead, as the film is written by men, made by men, and paid for by men, it chooses to instead go down the route of every rapist, kidnapper and abusers wet dream and have Aurora fall in love with JIm. To the point where, when they are trying to repair the ship and his life is in danger, she risks her own life to save his.
At the end of the film Jim discovers a way to put only one of them back into hibernation, and offers Aurora the option, in someway making up for his previous actions. It would have been an apt ending had she chosen to do so. Jim atones for his previous actions, Aurora gets to fulfil her dream of living on the new planet, and the other passengers are saved by the actions of Jim and Aurora in repairing the damaged spacecraft. Instead, the script writers decided the Aurora, now in love with her abuser, should instead choose to sacrifice her dream and remain with Jim, living out the remainder of their lives together.
This is, as I said, creepy. It is also uncomfortable viewing, unsettling and disturbing. Further it raises serious questions about the mind-set of the people responsible for making the film, and you also have to wonder just how big a pay cheque it takes for Jennifer Lawrence to discard her self respect and principals.
Apparently it was $20m.
I hope that money helps her sleep at night and push to the back of her mind the message this films sends out to men about abusing women.
It has received some hostile reviews because the film creates empathy for the protagonist (Chris Pratt's Jim), who makes a terrible decision which basically sentences Jennifer Lawrence's character (Aurora) to live the rest of her life trapped on a spacecraft. However, drama has traditionally focused on heroes who commit an forgivable sin and then have to suffer the consequences. Pratt does get a chance to redeem himself, which is what we the audience are expecting and the film does play with our expectations of whether he will pay with his life. Maybe if the film had explored the theme of forgiveness, it could have gained some emotional heft, and appeased those critics who were appalled by the film's premise.
The film has many positives. Great casting and chemistry between the actors. Stunning set design and cinematography. Passengers is never less than entertaining.
Perhaps other, better, sci-fi films, such as 'The Martian' and 'Arrival' stole its thunder at the box office, but 'Passengers' is still a film worth paying to see. Recommended.
I am going to start by saying I was interested in this movie because I have enjoyed Chris Pratt often bringing affable characters to life. He often has this down to earth and goofy charm which makes any movie more fun. There is rarely a time where the movie chooses to utilize his skills with humor and instead makes him more of a serious character. Jennifer Lawrence only demonstrates one facial expression and we often see her disgusted. Screaming hysterically contributes to several laughable scenes. Jennifer does not move beyond the cardboard cutout of her character and chooses to overreact to a situation. One scene comes to mind where a person would not behave in that way unless they were very deranged. Character reactions are not realistic and no one behaves as you should if you were woken up early on your journey to the next planet. I would be furious and heartbroken to know I had to live my whole life on this ship. Rarely, the characters attempt to find a way out of their situation.
Often, the movie is humorless and it is apparent the wrong approach is used. It would be more enjoyable if there was more humor sprinkled in and the movie did not take itself too seriously. I say this due to the movie playing out as more of a romance movie than a thriller. The ridiculousness of a romance in space makes me want to see more humor. The premise of this movie is wasted on trying to make the movie as a connection between Lawrence and Pratt. This direction may have been used to draw in more of a female audience. However, the romance is predictable and safe when love has its rough moments. Lawrence is too forgiving of Pratt to make the chemistry seem real. Only a surface level romance plays out here and Pratt is not given much to do except play a sickly sweet leading man.
Most of my problem comes from the tone switching from romance to thriller to romance again. I kept waiting and wanting the movie to pick up steam. Something to happen to break up the improbable romance but it rested on its laurels hoping to enrapture us with the chemistry of the two characters. The one moment where it promises to get freakier and twisted gets resolved so easily. Logic does not play much of a part in this movie. A problem exists early in the movie where his sleep chamber is interrupted and the movie does not use much logic throughout most of the picture. The effects of space do not really factor in when space should be a major character in this movie.
One thing going for the movie is the premise. I like the idea of a passenger ship going to a distant colony planet and the journey of these people to find a better life. Colonization on another planet could have so many possibilities and they do not go in any of the directions. I wanted to enjoy this movie especially when Laurence Fishburne makes an appearance and my enjoyment of Chris Pratt. The lazy writing paired with the wooden performances of its leads deter me from giving this movie my approval.
You will find the premise interesting until it falls into a safe romance. Predictable plot points prevent the film from becoming a much better movie. The potential in this movie is buried underneath a lack of focus and poor execution of the story. Overall, a misguided effort never gets off the ground and leaves me wanting to go to previous efforts by the actors to discover again why I enjoyed viewing them on the big screen.
Cool concept, but falls flat in carrying you through the story.
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In the future some of Earth's population have decided to relocate to another planet, so just hop into a tube then hibernate for about a 100 years and your there!
Unless anything goes for some Hollywood heartthrobs passengers like Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence who wake up 90 years too early and no way to get back to sleep.... Image result for passengers 2016
The concept itself is intriguing, the special effects make the central location believable and the cast work hard to carry off the script, with extra pressure on them as they are basically the only ones on screen apart from a scene stealing Micheal Sheen as a Android Barman and a brief very welcomed appearance from Laurence Fishburne who both keep morale up for the passengers and audience.
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However the story and the tone are muddled, it feels like we go through the five stages of grief (twice), the romance is so blindingly expected like putting two hamsters in a cage (hell if Pratt was replaced by John Candy after a few decades he'd look good to Jennifer), the big reason behind the awakening is well not really that big and we take a rather creepy tone at one point making Star Lord into Star Creep.
Image result for passengers The shame of passengers is it contains an abundance of missed opportunities, a creepy twist would have been much better delivered it we saw it as a back flash rather than watch every single plot point unfold at a snails pace . An Divine reason behind the inciting event would have given depth and more purpose to our journey.
Passengers is by no means a action film like perhaps it's marketed or even a mystery thriller like it's been hinted at. It's more fitting to a Psychological Drama set in space... now try and sell that to your 12A audience.
Image result for passengers 2016 Passengers has a good concept and in the hands of a creative genius like Kubrick this could have perhaps been quite special but here it never pushes to evolve, to dare to be bigger or take risks and with a scope as big as the universe that's a real shame.
Nothing is as unsalvageable as a story that has an obscure motive to be told. Thank God this flick is not one of them! Though critically panned, this received mildly rave audience reviews, including mine.