Passengers (2016)

Okay, I’m not saying the critics are totally wrong about this film, but please give it a chance.

Many of them will have you believe this is a creepy motion picture, and I could see that argument. The ads have been lying to you—Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence did not wake up together, but rather Chris Pratt woke up first and then got lonely. He woke her up because he became obsessed with her. If you want to discount the film on that alone, go ahead. I won’t criticize you, and I’m a bit peeved myself that the story was sold as something else.

For the rest of you, hear me out. This is not Collateral Beauty; the filmmakers understand the ethical problems with the characters’ actions, and they act appropriately. Even Jim (Pratt) understands them. He knows how wrong it would be to wake her up, but he spends a year alone on a massive ship and just can’t take it anymore. It’s either suicide or waking her up for the company, and he regrets waking her up the moment he does it. Plus, when Aurora (Lawrence) finds out the truth, she is far from happy about it. Her life has been rendered useless without her consent.

The idea makes us uncomfortable, and it should, but wouldn’t you rather watch a film that makes you think than one that doesn’t?

With all that out of the way, let me talk about the film just a little bit. Passengers is about the Avalon, a ship headed towards a new planet to colonize. When the shields fail in the middle of an asteroid field, Jim Preston is accidentally woken up. He can’t go back into hibernation, and he got up 90 years too soon. He tries to make the best of the situation, but he eventually wakes up Aurora Lane, a writer with whom he’s become infatuated. She thinks it might be fate that they woke up together.

More and more things start to go wrong with the ship, and I promise it’s all been thought out. Jim is a good guy. As he and Aurora fall in love, the truth comes out, and then it’s a matter of making amends before it’s too late. It’ll take the both of them to save the ship, and all its sleeping passengers, from destruction.

The film was directed by Morten Tyldum (The Imitation Game), from Blacklist script by Jon Spaihts, and you’re not going to find a more sleek-looking film this side of Star Wars. The sets are gargantuan and the effects are top-of-the-line, way better than they need to be. You can tell the film has a big budget, but I don’t think any corners were cut in the making of it.

I went in thinking it was going to be a film about a irredeemable pervert, and I could not have been more wrong. Yes, he did something nearly unforgivable, but it’s not like he didn’t consider it for months and months beforehand. I thoroughly enjoyed this film, and I hope you’ll give it the same chance I did. It’s Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence, come on.

3 Green

Passengers is in theaters now.

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