Passengers


This film had so much going for it on paper. A great cast, reliable director and an exciting script. But the end result was something so formulaic, so ho-hum and so typically cliche that the feeling of disappointment and let down hit hard.

Somewhere within this Hollywood, sci-fi trope was a genuinely exciting, courageous story about morality and love. Glimpses of it could still be seen throughout, especially in the first act but by the time the third act rolled in, we have already went full blown Armageddon-esque as everybody raced to tie up the loose ends and complete the story.

Just like Interstellar before it, Passengers could have been so much more if the people involved in its creation had the audacity - and balls - to commit to something more than just popcorn fillers.

That is not to say that there was nothing good about the film. Ignoring the thematic flaws - and hence also character blindness - this film is a reliable Hollywood, sci-fi film. It was entertaining as it was predictable. Director Morten Tyldum (of The Imitation Game) was capable and had a few scenes that were beautifully executed - that one swimming pool shot of Jennifer Lawrence was movie-magic.

Lawrence and Chris Pratt had great chemistry and were wonderful together. However, when it came to more serious moments, Pratt faltered whereas Lawrence shined. Perhaps it would have been better if the roles were reversed. How feminist!

Michael Sheen was also a consistent bright spot in this film, adding some comic relief beyond Pratt's initial shindigs.

As for Laurence Fishburne. One word: wasted. Three words: deux ex machina.

Go watch Moon, Duncan Jones' 2009 one-man film with Sam Rockwell if you want a smarter, more courageous and much better executed existentialism sci-fi film.

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