11th May2017

‘Passengers’ DVD Review

by Paul Metcalf

Stars: Jennifer Lawrence, Chris Pratt, Michael Sheen, Laurence Fishburne, Andy Garcia, Vince Foster, Kara Flowers | Written by Jon Spaihts | Directed by Morten Tyldum


Sometimes with big Hollywood releases, big named actors are seen as the sign a movie will be good. Sometimes that is not the case though, and films like Passengers aren’t received as warmly as would be hoped. So, is Passengers a bad movie? My simple answer to that is no, read on to find out why.

When Jim Preston (Chris Pratt) and Aurora Lane (Jennifer Lawrence) are awoken 90 years too early on a spaceship travelling to a new “Homestead Colony” they make the most of the luxury ship and all it can offer. With Jim holding back a secret though and the ship acting strangely, will everything run as smoothly as hoped?

When I saw the trailer for Passengers, there were a lot of assumptions made. There were certain styles, and scenes that were shown that could be perceived as this being a psychological drama where weird things were going on within the spaceship. In reality though, this isn’t the case, and in truth that is perfectly fine. The film should just be accepted for what it actually is.

It comes as no surprise really that Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence would make for a very attractive couple, and they definitely do. The characters they play though are selfish in their own ways, especially Jim. It is interesting that they must overcome their own personality traits to survive together, and work together to solve the problems they face. The problem is these problems are quite generic in nature when it comes to story.

The fact is, Passengers doesn’t need to be in space, it could very well be set on earth (without the hibernation) and everything would feel just the same. The sci-fi setting feels like a paint job applied to a fairly basic story. If you are a fan of love stories then this will be fine. I tend to think that anybody looking for more than that may be disappointed.

Getting past the problem of the space setting not really mattering, there is a good film hidden here. Pratt and Lawrence may not put in Oscar-winning performances, but you care about the characters and want them to succeed. This is especially the case of Pratt, who even when he does something very selfish, you (like him) hope it isn’t revealed).

What I feel about Passengers is that it is a missed chance, but that is my opinion. Rather than go deeper into what isolation would do to the characters, especially in space, we have a fairly generic love story. It is a likeable love story, but still, not much more. There may be some snazzy special effects and a few action scenes, but it just feels lacking.

If you watch Passengers with no expectations then you’ll hopefully enjoy what you see. It really is a case of the trailer teasing things that the film doesn’t actually want to explore, and honestly that is fine. Passengers is a love story featuring two of Hollywood’s biggest stars, and it does the job it was designed to do. Simple as that.

**** 4/5

Passengers is available in the UK on DVD and Blu-ray now.

Review originally posted on PissedOffGeek

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