In 1998 the brilliant Douglas Adams wrote a computer game called Starship Titanic. The game play involved a sole passenger wandering around a cruise ship trying to keep it from blowing up. The only other people on board are a collection of robots, well, more correctly, androids. Passengers reminded me of Starship Titanic once or twice. This is one of the problems with being a Science Fiction fan, everything reminds me of something else.
Ok, so Passengers got all kinds of bad press for no good reason. This is a perfectly fine science fiction film. The acting is good, the sets are amazing, the music, with the notable exception of the crap they play over the closing credits, is great. The special effects are nearly perfect and the story is a standard set of science fiction tropes.
We open up with one of the passengers waking up and the ship’s autobots telling him is four months out from his new homeworld. He soon realizes that he is alone and that he has a wait of 90 years. The writers have made it easy on our hero. He has all the food, water, and air he will need for the rest of his life. But since he is a lowly mechanic, he doesn’t get anything but black coffee and oatmeal for breakfast and he is assigned to a minimalist cabin. The first bit of the film sees him hacking the various systems so he can move into the finest suite on the ship and eat at the many fine restaurants reserved for First Class.
Our Robinson Crusoe soon grows tired of being alone. Well, mostly alone. He does have the company of a bar tending robot. We then get to the great moral problem of the film. There are somewhere around five thousand other people asleep on the ship. To stop being lonely, all he has to do is wake someone up. He finds one of the many hotties heading for the new world and wakes her up.
So, would you wake up another person, and condemn them to spending the rest of their life on board this ultra luxury cruise ship? Well, yeah. Might even wake up more than one other person.
I liked Passengers.