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Don’t Pass Up “Passengers”

Movie+still+courtesy+of+SONY+PICTURES+ENTERTAINMENT+INC.
Movie still courtesy of SONY PICTURES ENTERTAINMENT INC.

Movie still courtesy of SONY PICTURES ENTERTAINMENT INC.

Movie still courtesy of SONY PICTURES ENTERTAINMENT INC.

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What would you do if you were forced to choose between living a selfless but lonely life, or a selfish but fulfilling life? Protagonist Jim Preston, played by Chris Pratt, is faced with this choice in “Passengers.”  He can either spend the entirety of his life alone, or he can bring someone else into his life, but at a substantial cost.

Jim is a passenger aboard a spaceship headed for a new home on another planet, but, in a cruel act of fate, the ship malfunctions, and he wakes up 90 years too early. He spends an entire year attempting to figure out how to go back to sleep for the rest of the journey, but realizes that he is now going to spend the rest of his life trapped in this ship where every other human is asleep.

Or not—he has the power to wake anyone else up, but is he willing to drag someone else into his situation?  Whoever he decides to wake up may be good company for him, but would be forced to share his burden of living the rest of their lives aboard a ship without ever getting to see the new home that the ship is supposed to bring them to.  

Enter Jennifer Lawrence. Her character Aurora Lane is woken up by a “mysterious” malfunction of the ship, otherwise known as the repercussion to Jim’s choice.

As you may have suspected, they fall in love. But there is quite a twist. Aurora finds out Jim is the reason she woke up decades too early and that she will never get to achieve what she set out to do in her new home. Even though Aurora has fallen for Jim, she begins to despise him. The extensive size of the ship allows her to ice him out very easily.

The ship begins to malfunction—this time for real—and  suddenly the fate of all 5,000 passengers falls in Jim and Aurora’s hands, forcing them to forgive each other and embrace their situation.

I would recommend this movie mainly because of the acting. Jim and Aurora are easy to love, so much that Jim’s selfish decision is understandable. In theory, Jim’s choice seems extremely selfish, but watching him struggle with extreme loneliness makes his choice seem acceptable. The special effects are believable and create a convincing spaceship and outer space scene.

This movie may have a somewhat predictable storyline, but when I was watching it, it didn’t feel that way at all. Despite Jim waking Aurora up and acting selfishly he is a very lovable character. He and Aurora are played in a way that will have you genuinely rooting for them.

SPOILERS ALERT FOR THE ENDING OF THE MOVIE

Unlike most movies these days, this one has a fairly happy ending. Jim and Aurora may be forced to live out the rest of their days in a ship with no other humans, but at least they have each other, and as you may have predicted, they do end up together.

END SPOILERS

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Don’t Pass Up “Passengers”