By Emanuel Ortiz
Passengers surprise amount of comedy as well as its two stars made for quite an enjoyable watch.
Passengers stars Chris Pratt (Jim Preston) and Jennifer Lawrence (Aurora Lane). They’re both asleep on a spaceship that is taking them to a new colony planet 120 years from their departure when they awaken 90 years too early. They try to figure out a way to go back to sleep in their pods so that they don’t die alone in space. It’s an interesting premise for sure, and I thought the movie did a great job of highlighting isolation and the desperate actions one would take after being alone for so long. There was an abundant use of comedy that I wasn’t expecting in this movie. I wasn’t expecting this movie to be grim by any means, but the use of comedy really helps move this movie along as well as keep me interested in Chris Pratt’s character.
Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence had great chemistry in the film. This was something that was essential in making this movie work because it relies heavily on these two actors and their interactions with each other. Their relationship felt authentic, even much so later on in the movie when secrets are revealed about each other.
Another interesting approach was how they chose to tell the story. This movie relied more on romance than I thought it would. The trailers in my opinion, sold this as a sci-fi thriller movie but it was more of a romance thriller than anything else which leads me to the last act of this movie which I can’t really spoil much. It is in the last act that the “thriller” genre applies itself the most. I didn’t enjoy the last act. Although I felt as though I was pitched another movie than what I got, the last act feels as though it was sort of thrown in there at the end. The two needed a conflict of some sort that they had to work on together to resolve, and I get that. Obviously, the fear of dying alone is present throughout the movie, but there needed to be a more immediate conflict. Passengers takes a swing and attempts to land one in the final act, but it doesn’t quite land. The conflict felt shoehorned in and didn’t make much sense. The conflict was teased towards the beginning of the movie, but instead there is some sort of issue with the heat inside of spaceship and how they have to remove it or something along those lines. I honestly can’t remember in full details because it truly lost me at that point.
Apart from that, I was immersed in this movie from the start because of its approach to isolation and how it could affect someone. I thought the movie added some really cool sci-fi elements as well such as the design of the spaceship, which I honestly thought looked dumb in the trailers but managed to work really well in the movie. The robots and everything inside of the ship was so cool although some of the CGI faltered at times.
Apart from the third act, Passengers was a fun sci-fi romance movie. There were many familiar elements (mostly about isolation) that you might have seen before, but there was a twist to it that I think gave it a fresh perspective. If you go into this movie expecting a sci-fi thriller, you’re going to be disappointed. Romance sounds like a negative word to associate to a movie at times, but it wasn’t cheesy and it was the isolation aspect that really made the romance shine more.