Passengers (2016)

Mike Frezon

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I just watched this movie for this first time over the weekend.
Me, too.

It was enjoyable enough. But I also have a hard time getting past the HUGE moral failing of Pratt's character in terms of his decision--upon which the entire story hinges.

But I think Jennifer Lawrence is setting herself up to be one of our great actresses. I really do. She is so much more than a young, comely starlet.
 

Tino

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Sadly I think I would have done the exact same thing he did. I think most would have.

Time heals all wounds. Plus she would have died anyway if he didn't wake her up. Along with everyone else on the ship.
 

Josh Steinberg

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I think that needs to be a factor in any discussion of the film - the ship was malfunctioning because it sustained catastrophic damage. Chris Pratt's character was the first victim of this, but he wouldn't have been the only one.

On some level, I blame the company. They shouldn't have sent a crew on a 100 year voyage without there being anyone awake. A skeleton crew that was meant to last generations should have been sent along. I forget, but didn't they say there were thousands of people onboard the ship? Send an extra hundred. Ten people stay awake at a time and serve onboard the ship to make sure nothing bad happens for ten years. Then, they go to sleep, and the next ten wake up and do the same. Or five people. Whatever. But I just can't find it in myself to completely blame Pratt when he was the first victim here. If Pratt hadn't woken up in the first place, the ship would have completely malfunctioned and they all would have died. Maybe Pratt would have been more morally pure, but that distinction doesn't seem to matter as much when you're dead.

And Pratt knows he did something wrong. He agonizes over it, he doesn't want to do it, but he's been placed in an impossible situation, again, thanks to the company. How much crushing loneliness can anyone be expected to take? Especially when the antidote to that loneliness was all around. To use another example: I know stealing is morally wrong, but let's say you have no food. There's food in a box next to you, but it doesn't belong to you. You're not a thief, you don't want to steal. There is no food anywhere else except that box that's right next to you that's not yours. Tell me all you want about crime and morality, at the point where you're starving to death, I'm not going to blame you for grabbing an apple.

But I also understand the anger of Lawrence's character, and I think that was well played.

The ending of the film really worked for me, where Pratt is willing to sacrifice himself to save her and the rest of the ship. In that moment, she realizes that she could be alone for the rest of her life, and it snaps everything into focus for her. And while the circumstances of their meeting might have been a deception, I don't think Pratt ever lied about anything else to her. Though their meeting was contrived, their chemistry is real. Lawrence's video dairies said that she was leaving Earth behind because she didn't feel a connection to anyone or anything. She didn't have family, she didn't feel close to her friends. When she meets Pratt, she finally feels something. Isn't that more important than life on some dumb colony? I would think it should be for a character that's leaving a planet behind because she hasn't ever felt a connection with someone.

I think it's easy to write off the film as just being a twisted Stockholm syndrome tale, but I think that's simplistic and dismissive. I accept the actions of the characters in the film as being understandable responses given the extraordinary circumstances they were in.
 

Adam Lenhardt

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I think that needs to be a factor in any discussion of the film - the ship was malfunctioning because it sustained catastrophic damage. Chris Pratt's character was the first victim of this, but he wouldn't have been the only one.
The problem with this is that it doesn't absolve Pratt's character of his culpability because he didn't know that the ship suffered catastrophic damage at the time he made the decision he made.

It's actually one of the more problematic parts of the screenplay for me. I would have been less troubled by the movie if it hadn't tried to give him a hero moment at the end and make it so that she would have died if he had woken her up. It would have been more honest if they'd just played out the consequences of his decision making, without a crisis handy to help him win her back over.
 

wtuhami

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Thought provoking and original. Not the greatest of films...but at least it's not a rip off of another movie.
 

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