I tend to agree with movie critics even though most people around me don't care about them. This is one movie I don't necessarily agree with critics on. It didn't get great reviews, but I wanted to see it anyways. And I was pleasantly surprised.
Passengers is about a group of 5,000 people who volunteered to be a part of a new colony on a very distant planet. The journey includes being in a state of hibernation for almost the entire 120 year journey (say goodbye to everything you knew). The ship is on autopilot. And things start to go wrong on a "perfect" ship - like the titanic. With the ship malfunctioning, a few strangers have to learn to live with their loneliness, learn about each other, and do what they can to fix the mistakes.
I thought the story was good, but also showed similarities with other movies like WALL-E, Gravity, and The Martian among others - similarities like location, scenario, loneliness, and starting a new community. The creativity in that sense was slightly lacking, but was still very entertaining.
The cinematography was very good other than some shots that I wondered why they chose to do what they did. I guess that's the case in any movie though. Specifically, I didn't like that they chose to include multiple nauseating shots that would spin the entire image on the screen over and over again. I'm not a fan. Maybe it's just my taste though. One thing I would like to point out is that the set-design and graphic work were particularly spectacular. They go hand in hand with cinematography so I wanted to give those a shout out.
I thought the acting was tremendous. It's very difficult to write a feature film with the small number of characters that were included in this film. This movie in particular is very good at exploring the range of emotions that would happen in their predicament. Everything from the comic relief to the anger and hatred back to the romanticism felt genuine throughout the movie.
I thought it was very good, and was worth the money to go see it in matinee. I'd recommend it to someone who wants to go see something other than Star Wars in theaters right now.
Overall - 4/5
Cinematography - 4.5/5
Directing - 4/5
Writing - 3/5
Editing - 4.5/5