Monday, January 2, 2017

"Passengers" Short Review

I've watched also tonight the Sci-Fi movie "Passengers", starring Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence and directed by Morten Tyldum - who did previously the pretty good "Imitation Game" with Benedict Cumberbatch, which i remember enjoying a lot.

The movie tells the story of a huge spaceship travelling with thousands of humans asleep to a colony planet where the ship will arrive in 120 years. But a malfunction awake from the sleep chambers 90 years early one of them ( Chris Pratt ). "Passengers" is far to be perfect but is really gorgeous esthetically speaking - especially the spaceship sets even if there is no doubt that most of them have been created digitally as there is no way the production would have paid to create these huge decors in "real".

Making a movie with two actors only ( or almost but i don't reveal more here ) lost in space in a giant spaceship was a challenge but for the most the movie succeed to don't have boring moments - not totally, but "for the most". That said, Morten Tydlum, the director, is not Stanley Kubrick, and he don't pretend to be even if you can feel that the care to realistic decor in the spaceship eye in direction of Kubrick's 2001 A Space Odyssey style. But the script of "Passengers" don't have the metaphysics dimension that "2001" had. So let's stop here to compare the both as it won't be fair, but let's just say that a script with a bit more depth would have been welcome. By the way, talking about Kubrick, there is a great tribute in "Passengers" to another Kubrick movie - not "2001" but "The Shining" - as you'll see if you watch "Passengers".

Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence do a good job, especially Jennifer Lawrence whom i consider a much more superior actor. The problem with Passengers is that it's a movie which shows involuntarily the limits of Chris Pratt. Don't get me wrong, Pratt is okay in his role of a mechanic, played with his usual cocky style that girls love, but there is a scene at the start where he wear a long beard - a bit like the one of Tom Hanks in "Castaway" - and not only the beard is fake and you can see it, which is not the biggest problem, but you realize that Chris Pratt regular acting is not enough interesting to be interesting even hidden by a fake beard. He's okay all along the rest of the movie - thanks God he cut his beard shortly after this sequence - but  you realize that when a scene must be emotional, he has some limits.

This reminds me a story with Shia LaBeouf, back in 2008, when he was the young blockbuster star in Transformers and Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. At that time, everyone was talking about him as the new golden boy actor whom, in addition, was the protégé of Steven Spielberg. I remember a talk i had with a friend of mine, telling him that "in ten years he will be forgotten". And for the most,  it's what happened. And i'm sorry to say that i have the same feeling with Chris Pratt. Pratt is very hot now and still will be in the coming years thanks to Jurassic World 2 and Guardians of Galaxy 2 but if he don't go through serious changes inside of him, i give him too ten years to be "out" from the top list.

Back to Passengers, now, and even if it's not the Sci-Fi movie of the decade, the movie is still very pleasant to watch, and "to watch" is the right word as it's difficult to be insensitive to the beauty of  each decor or each frame. I add that considering the challenge, as i've said, to do a movie with two people only in a spaceship, for the most Morten Tyldum did a very elegant filming all along, and i'm sure that's what you'll remember when you'll go out of the theatre after watching "Passengers".

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