“Passengers” Builds on Space Exploration Trend


We do not trust robots in space ships. No, sir, we do not.

Epic space travel films are making a comeback. This fall, Passengers arrives, bringing a glittering cast and impressive effects. The plot revolves around two passengers on an advanced sleeper ship. Due to a malfunction (or sabotage?) two passengers wake up decades earlier than planned. They face a lifetime together alone on a ship populated by robots. They may never even see their final destination. While this is a recipe for serious drama and character development, it’s not the film’s only plot line. Hovering over the characters’ heads is their need to know why? Why did they wake up early? Why is there no apparent safety protocol for such situations (waking a mechanic, maybe)? Most importantly – what’s going wrong with the ship?

Traditional scifi based on space exploration and its abundant dangers has appeared in cinemas and on the small screen several times over the past several years. For a while, only franchises like Star Trek had anything to do with space, and the series is set so far in the future, it’s difficult to compare to human astronaut tales.

Will these stand alone films and new series break the Hollywood reboot trend?

M. Leigh Hood is a rare beast of the Cincinnati wilderness typically preoccupied with writing, nerding, and filming The Spittoon List. For more articles and stories by M. Leigh Hood, look HERE.

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