Passengers is a science fiction movie that was released on December 21, 2016. The movie stars Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence as Jim Preston and Aurora Lange as passengers on a high tech ship, Avalon, en route to a new world known as Homestead II. Unfortunately, the ship malfunctions causing Jim Preston’s hibernation pod to release him 90 years too early. Jim struggles to face the truth and tries to figure out how to go back into hibernation. After suffering for a year alone, Jim finds Aurora Lane’s hibernation pod. He watches all of her interviews and reads her journalist work, ultimately to become obsessed with the woman. He begins to contemplate awakening her for the sake of love and human contact. The main focus of the movie is based upon Jim’s decision to save himself by awakening another passenger. In an interview with Gizmodo, film writer, Jon Spaihts addresses:
“It’s not as if it’s an accidental oversight of the film, where we, through some cultural blindness, have failed to see the appalling nature of our hero’s actions. It is the subject of the film. And I think that making a movie that leaves people room to argue about what they would have done, what they could have forgiven, what they can understand or fail to understand, I think that’s great. I think that’s good storytelling. What I don’t believe the movie does is endorse or exonerate anyone. The movie looks, evenhandedly, at the dilemma everybody was in. I think putting good people in impossible circumstances makes for fascinating storytelling.”
The director, Morten Tyldum, believes that Aurora Lane’s actions further on in the movie show her forgiveness and understanding of Jim Preston’s actions:
“I think that most of us, if we had the choice, would have done what Chris’s character do. We’re lying to ourselves if we’re saying that we won’t. And I think also that Jen’s character and her stance, the moment he walks out [of the ship] and may not come back, she understands that, knowing she will be alone on the ship. And she understands. She completely understands why he did that. And I think it’s a very interesting dilemma and I was very fortunate to make a movie on that scale, such a commercial movie, that has this layer of depth.”
In the movie, the audience is put in Jim’s shoes to experience the lack of human contact and what that can do to a form of life that heavily relies on social interactions. When both passengers realize that the ship’s malfunctions are getting significantly worse, the tension tries to build up towards a climax that may not only end the lives of the two passengers, but as well as the 5,000 passengers still hibernating on the ship.
The movie, Passengers, made about $14.9 million across the three-day weekend and is expected to reach $45 million after a week. Critiques left by the audience showed the dissatisfaction of the viewers. This movie teaches a moral lesson for the audience to see and experience but perhaps, the romantic approach overpowers the lesson.