Passengers (2016)


Morten Tyldum directs Jennifer Lawrence, Chris Pratt and Michael Sheen in this glossy sci-fi about two star crossed lovers who find themselves woken up decades early on a malfunctioning space voyage. 

Ah… take a handful of Titanic, Mr and Mrs Smith, Event Horizon, Wall.E (Wall.E?!), The Shining (THE SHINING!?!?) and pour over the two coolest stars and you get this… a mish mash with occasional interesting spikes. Swinging wildly from funny to introspective, action adventure to sexy romance, ethical debate to FX fest, Passengers tries to please everyone without ever really doing enough to satisfy anyone… except me but then again I’m a sucker for a bit of smooching and a bit of stardust. So if you are put off by Pratt’s decision to crack open the hypersleep pod of the yummiest face on the ship, then sadly there really is not and could not be enough meaty chew to win you around. If you came for futurelit bods shimmering against each other then sparks just about fly adequately in the middle section – the ever watchable Lawrence has never been saucier. And if you came for outer space action, then you have to settle patiently for some slick production design until the final clunky but engrossing 20 minutes of explosions and heroic sacrifice. In all honesty, I was charmed by the pretty stars, the even prettier starcruiser and the diverting disaster that eventually emerges. I came for frothy, beautiful entertainment and Passengers, at a squeak, delivers. Pratt waking Lawrence up (out of necessity in more ways than one by end credits) doesn’t feel quite as harsh a moral dilemma for the viewer to forgive as Winslet not pulling DiCaprio up onto her kingsize wardrobe… but I only care if a movie is worth watching, not if its gender political content is currently palatable, so what do I know?


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