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Passengers ranks...

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Author Topic: Passengers  (Read 1014 times)

Diego Tutweiller

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Re: Passengers
« Reply #20 on: December 10, 2016, 11:13:57 pm »
...I'm kinda looking forward to this *hides*

At the risk of sounding repetitious....... why?
I like the two leads and the premise seems interesting enough that I think it'll be a fun time, if not necessarily great cinema.

I can understand Pratt, even if he's just a side character from a TV show who got incredibly overhyped, but Lawrence? Really? Paasche, please see the light. We need to all move past this as a species. Jennifer Lawrence has literally no appeal aside from being fairly attractive. She is not "down to earth." Her entire personality is a sham to appeal to self-conscious women who like pizza and fat dumbfucks like Dom Cobb who have been manipulated into thinking she's an icon of some sort by movies and tabloids. She makes up bullshit stories for talk shows that make her look like an idiot, and through her time in Hollywood she's developed a seriously awful personality that shows itself whenever she puts on her "relatable" act. As for her actual acting, it's never been anything but passable. She was all right in The Hunger Games, but once she became a star she ended up ruining all her movies with her drama queen crap (X-Men, anyone?). Still, they turned her into a central character because they knew it would put asses in the seats. Nowadays it's frankly quite obvious that the only reason she gets roles is because Tumblr has decided she's "quotable" and they want to see her in more stuff. At this point she could climb on top of her car, vomit, and push out a fat turd, and people would say she's "breaking down barriers."

She's two gluteal implants away from being a Kardashian.
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Caleb Paasche

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Re: Passengers
« Reply #21 on: December 10, 2016, 11:38:12 pm »
...I'm kinda looking forward to this *hides*

At the risk of sounding repetitious....... why?
I like the two leads and the premise seems interesting enough that I think it'll be a fun time, if not necessarily great cinema.

I can understand Pratt, even if he's just a side character from a TV show who got incredibly overhyped, but Lawrence? Really? Paasche, please see the light. We need to all move past this as a species. Jennifer Lawrence has literally no appeal aside from being fairly attractive. She is not "down to earth." Her entire personality is a sham to appeal to self-conscious women who like pizza and fat dumbfucks like Dom Cobb who have been manipulated into thinking she's an icon of some sort by movies and tabloids. She makes up bullshit stories for talk shows that make her look like an idiot, and through her time in Hollywood she's developed a seriously awful personality that shows itself whenever she puts on her "relatable" act. As for her actual acting, it's never been anything but passable. She was all right in The Hunger Games, but once she became a star she ended up ruining all her movies with her drama queen crap (X-Men, anyone?). Still, they turned her into a central character because they knew it would put asses in the seats. Nowadays it's frankly quite obvious that the only reason she gets roles is because Tumblr has decided she's "quotable" and they want to see her in more stuff. At this point she could climb on top of her car, vomit, and push out a fat turd, and people would say she's "breaking down barriers."

She's two gluteal implants away from being a Kardashian.
I mean, Lawrence may be overhyped a bit at this point but that doesn't change the fact that she's charismatic and capable of an incredible performance. She was absolutely deserving of her Oscar and honestly I thought she should've won for American Hustle the next year. Sure it's a bit annoying that Mystique is now kind of the central character in the X-Men franchise but I can't blame her for the studio wanting to capitalize on her popularity. Fact is, I think she's a very good actress and I can see her and Pratt having good chemistry and making for a strong leading pair.
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Re: Passengers
« Reply #22 on: December 10, 2016, 11:39:00 pm »
...I'm kinda looking forward to this *hides*

At the risk of sounding repetitious....... why?
I like the two leads and the premise seems interesting enough that I think it'll be a fun time, if not necessarily great cinema.

I can understand Pratt, even if he's just a side character from a TV show who got incredibly overhyped, but Lawrence? Really? Paasche, please see the light. We need to all move past this as a species. Jennifer Lawrence has literally no appeal aside from being fairly attractive. She is not "down to earth." Her entire personality is a sham to appeal to self-conscious women who like pizza and fat dumbfucks like Dom Cobb who have been manipulated into thinking she's an icon of some sort by movies and tabloids. She makes up bullshit stories for talk shows that make her look like an idiot, and through her time in Hollywood she's developed a seriously awful personality that shows itself whenever she puts on her "relatable" act. As for her actual acting, it's never been anything but passable. She was all right in The Hunger Games, but once she became a star she ended up ruining all her movies with her drama queen crap (X-Men, anyone?). Still, they turned her into a central character because they knew it would put asses in the seats. Nowadays it's frankly quite obvious that the only reason she gets roles is because Tumblr has decided she's "quotable" and they want to see her in more stuff. At this point she could climb on top of her car, vomit, and push out a fat turd, and people would say she's "breaking down barriers."

She's two gluteal implants away from being a Kardashian.
I mean, Lawrence may be overhyped a bit at this point but that doesn't change the fact that she's charismatic and capable of an incredible performance. She was absolutely deserving of her Oscar and honestly I thought she should've won for American Hustle the next year. Sure it's a bit annoying that Mystique is now kind of the central character in the X-Men franchise but I can't blame her for the studio wanting to capitalize on her popularity. Fact is, I think she's a very good actress and I can see her and Pratt having good chemistry and making for a strong leading pair.

And you didn't like Children of Men?

Tho Master Fie

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Re: Passengers
« Reply #23 on: December 10, 2016, 11:43:15 pm »
I can understand Pratt, even if he's just a side character from a TV show who got incredibly overhyped, but Lawrence? Really? Paasche, please see the light. We need to all move past this as a species. Jennifer Lawrence has literally no appeal aside from being fairly attractive. She is not "down to earth." Her entire personality is a sham to appeal to self-conscious women who like pizza and fat dumbfucks like Dom Cobb who have been manipulated into thinking she's an icon of some sort by movies and tabloids. She makes up bullshit stories for talk shows that make her look like an idiot, and through her time in Hollywood she's developed a seriously awful personality that shows itself whenever she puts on her "relatable" act. As for her actual acting, it's never been anything but passable. She was all right in The Hunger Games, but once she became a star she ended up ruining all her movies with her drama queen crap (X-Men, anyone?). Still, they turned her into a central character because they knew it would put asses in the seats. Nowadays it's frankly quite obvious that the only reason she gets roles is because Tumblr has decided she's "quotable" and they want to see her in more stuff. At this point she could climb on top of her car, vomit, and push out a fat turd, and people would say she's "breaking down barriers."

She's two gluteal implants away from being a Kardashian.
Had to hit "disagree" on this comment.



Jennifer Lawrence is not "fairly attractive".  She looks like a ham sandwich.  I'd rather fuсk John Tyler.
Also, her acting is far from passable.  I've seen better acting in low-budget рorn.

Diego Tutweiller

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Re: Passengers
« Reply #24 on: December 10, 2016, 11:54:57 pm »
I mean, Lawrence may be overhyped a bit at this point but that doesn't change the fact that she's charismatic and capable of an incredible performance. She was absolutely deserving of her Oscar and honestly I thought she should've won for American Hustle the next year. Sure it's a bit annoying that Mystique is now kind of the central character in the X-Men franchise but I can't blame her for the studio wanting to capitalize on her popularity. Fact is, I think she's a very good actress and I can see her and Pratt having good chemistry and making for a strong leading pair.

Yeah, she's charismatic in the way Donald Trump is charismatic, I guess. She appeals to really, really stupid people and because she's rich and famous, she makes their behavior seem mainstream and socially acceptable. Plus she's just needlessly mean-spirited. Like when she made fun of that foreign reporter. Or when she made up that bogus story about the Hawaiian rocks or whatever the fuck it was. Or when she called Christian Bale "fatman" after spending a few weeks talking about women and body image. Or when she complained about her life so much that Letterman had to tell her "No whining on the yacht." I'm sorry. I do not see the appeal. Just when you think she's as shallow as it gets, she somehow manages to drain a little more water out of the pool.

Her acting is a more subjective point, I suppose, and I do think she was okay in the first two Hunger Games films and American Hustle. That's about it, though. She certainly hasn't done anything Oscar-worthy. But nowadays, any woman with a little meat on her bones is "making a statement" about body image and they get showered with awards. And yeah, subjectivity, I know... but at the same time, I really can't see the argument for giving Jennifer Lawrence an Oscar any more than I can see the argument for giving one to Leo. I guess it's just a popularity contest at this point, as it likely always has been. They should just start giving out awards for Twitter followers and end this sham of pretending that it actually has something to do with acting talent.

As for your assertion that the movie's premise looks cool... what? Dude, you don't like Alien, Blade Runner, or Children of Men. I have never thought of you as a sci-fi fan, unless you count BVS or The Dark Knight as sci-fi (which I don't). Why in God's name does this appeal to you?

Caleb Paasche

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Re: Passengers
« Reply #25 on: December 11, 2016, 12:12:02 am »
I mean, Lawrence may be overhyped a bit at this point but that doesn't change the fact that she's charismatic and capable of an incredible performance. She was absolutely deserving of her Oscar and honestly I thought she should've won for American Hustle the next year. Sure it's a bit annoying that Mystique is now kind of the central character in the X-Men franchise but I can't blame her for the studio wanting to capitalize on her popularity. Fact is, I think she's a very good actress and I can see her and Pratt having good chemistry and making for a strong leading pair.

Yeah, she's charismatic in the way Donald Trump is charismatic, I guess. She appeals to really, really stupid people and because she's rich and famous, she makes their behavior seem mainstream and socially acceptable. Plus she's just needlessly mean-spirited. Like when she made fun of that foreign reporter. Or when she made up that bogus story about the Hawaiian rocks or whatever the fuck it was. Or when she called Christian Bale "fatman" after spending a few weeks talking about women and body image. Or when she complained about her life so much that Letterman had to tell her "No whining on the yacht." I'm sorry. I do not see the appeal. Just when you think she's as shallow as it gets, she somehow manages to drain a little more water out of the pool.

Her acting is a more subjective point, I suppose, and I do think she was okay in the first two Hunger Games films and American Hustle. That's about it, though. She certainly hasn't done anything Oscar-worthy. But nowadays, any woman with a little meat on her bones is "making a statement" about body image and they get showered with awards. And yeah, subjectivity, I know... but at the same time, I really can't see the argument for giving Jennifer Lawrence an Oscar any more than I can see the argument for giving one to Leo. I guess it's just a popularity contest at this point, as it likely always has been. They should just start giving out awards for Twitter followers and end this sham of pretending that it actually has something to do with acting talent.

As for your assertion that the movie's premise looks cool... what? Dude, you don't like Alien, Blade Runner, or Children of Men. I have never thought of you as a sci-fi fan, unless you count BVS or The Dark Knight as sci-fi (which I don't). Why in God's name does this appeal to you?
Should've cleared this up in an earlier post, but when I was talking about charisma, I meant strictly on screen. I don't really pay much attention to what actors and actresses do off screen, so I could really care less about her interviews and whatever else. I thought her performances in Silver Linings Playbook and American Hustle were both excellent, and I don't think the Oscar she received had anything to do with her popularity, well, maybe a little but I thought the SLP performance was strong enough to win on its own merit. On an aside, even though Leo's my favorite actor, I did think his Oscar last year was a bit of a makeup for him never winning before (I thought he should've won for Wolf of Wall Street, personally).

Anyway, as for your final point, those three movies don't mean that I don't care for sci-fi. Three of my top 10 all time (Inception, Looper, Source Code) are sci-fi films. I think it's more that the sci-fi films I tend to enjoy have some sort of premise that interests me (notice that each of the three in my top 10 have a clear "hook", while Alien and Blade Runner don't really have that. Children of Men was an outlier, I think). Again, it's not like I'm counting down the days till Passengers' release, but I would say that I'm looking forward to it and expect to have a good time based on the premise and talent involved (I thought The Imitation Game was quite a good film as well).
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Tho Master Fie

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Re: Passengers
« Reply #26 on: December 11, 2016, 12:24:40 am »
I thought The Imitation Game was quite a good film as well.
Could have taken this post seriously up until this last line...
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Diego Tutweiller

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Re: Passengers
« Reply #27 on: December 11, 2016, 12:27:32 am »
I mean, Lawrence may be overhyped a bit at this point but that doesn't change the fact that she's charismatic and capable of an incredible performance. She was absolutely deserving of her Oscar and honestly I thought she should've won for American Hustle the next year. Sure it's a bit annoying that Mystique is now kind of the central character in the X-Men franchise but I can't blame her for the studio wanting to capitalize on her popularity. Fact is, I think she's a very good actress and I can see her and Pratt having good chemistry and making for a strong leading pair.

Yeah, she's charismatic in the way Donald Trump is charismatic, I guess. She appeals to really, really stupid people and because she's rich and famous, she makes their behavior seem mainstream and socially acceptable. Plus she's just needlessly mean-spirited. Like when she made fun of that foreign reporter. Or when she made up that bogus story about the Hawaiian rocks or whatever the fuck it was. Or when she called Christian Bale "fatman" after spending a few weeks talking about women and body image. Or when she complained about her life so much that Letterman had to tell her "No whining on the yacht." I'm sorry. I do not see the appeal. Just when you think she's as shallow as it gets, she somehow manages to drain a little more water out of the pool.

Her acting is a more subjective point, I suppose, and I do think she was okay in the first two Hunger Games films and American Hustle. That's about it, though. She certainly hasn't done anything Oscar-worthy. But nowadays, any woman with a little meat on her bones is "making a statement" about body image and they get showered with awards. And yeah, subjectivity, I know... but at the same time, I really can't see the argument for giving Jennifer Lawrence an Oscar any more than I can see the argument for giving one to Leo. I guess it's just a popularity contest at this point, as it likely always has been. They should just start giving out awards for Twitter followers and end this sham of pretending that it actually has something to do with acting talent.

As for your assertion that the movie's premise looks cool... what? Dude, you don't like Alien, Blade Runner, or Children of Men. I have never thought of you as a sci-fi fan, unless you count BVS or The Dark Knight as sci-fi (which I don't). Why in God's name does this appeal to you?
Should've cleared this up in an earlier post, but when I was talking about charisma, I meant strictly on screen. I don't really pay much attention to what actors and actresses do off screen, so I could really care less about her interviews and whatever else. I thought her performances in Silver Linings Playbook and American Hustle were both excellent, and I don't think the Oscar she received had anything to do with her popularity, well, maybe a little but I thought the SLP performance was strong enough to win on its own merit. On an aside, even though Leo's my favorite actor, I did think his Oscar last year was a bit of a makeup for him never winning before (I thought he should've won for Wolf of Wall Street, personally).

Anyway, as for your final point, those three movies don't mean that I don't care for sci-fi. Three of my top 10 all time (Inception, Looper, Source Code) are sci-fi films. I think it's more that the sci-fi films I tend to enjoy have some sort of premise that interests me (notice that each of the three in my top 10 have a clear "hook", while Alien and Blade Runner don't really have that. Children of Men was an outlier, I think). Again, it's not like I'm counting down the days till Passengers' release, but I would say that I'm looking forward to it and expect to have a good time based on the premise and talent involved (I thought The Imitation Game was quite a good film as well).

Believe me, I have no trouble dissociating someone's public life from their art. Clint Eastwood's a senile old geezer and I still love his movies. But that requires there to be something there artistically. Eastwood is a success because regardless of what he supports politically, he'll still be able to make quality films. People like him despite his public life, not because of it. Do you see the difference? Lawrence isn't getting these roles because of her acting talent; she's getting them because people quote her on Facebook and "retweet" her, which in turn is only because she starred in a bunch of shitty YA films with a built-in audience. The Hunger Games would have been a success with or without the presence of Ms. Lawrence onscreen, I promise you that. If Shailene Woodley or Kristen Stewart had played Katniss, I guarantee that they'd be the ones starring in Passengers now.

The point I'm trying to make is that the reasoning behind Lawrence's popularity is her usage in memes and her regular appearance on rag magazine covers-- not her acting ability, which as Braden noted, is hardly anything to heap praise upon. So while I try to separate the person from their art and judge the art independently, I really don't see anything "artistic" about this woman's performances. They're passable. She fills space. She says the lines. She vaguely resembles the character from the book. That's about it.

Anyway, not sure what you mean by the bolded part, but I'd argue that this movie looks like it has more in common with Transformers than it does with any of those films you listed (two of which I like a lot). Nothing about this seems "high-concept" to me, at least from what I've gleaned from the trailers. It's just a dumb action movie in a sci-fi setting. I dunno, it doesn't seem like your kind of thing.
« Last Edit: December 11, 2016, 12:29:26 am by Diego Tutweiller »

Diego Tutweiller

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Re: Passengers
« Reply #28 on: December 11, 2016, 12:31:38 am »
Jennifer Lawrence is not "fairly attractive".  She looks like a ham sandwich.  I'd rather fuсk John Tyler.

She's no Audrey Hepburn, that's for sure. If I ran into her at a convenience store, I'd probably find her to be attractive. But I dunno... there's something about her face that's always seemed off to me. Like it's too round or something.

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Re: Passengers
« Reply #29 on: December 11, 2016, 12:40:28 am »
Jennifer Lawrence is not "fairly attractive".  She looks like a ham sandwich.  I'd rather fuсk John Tyler.

She's no Audrey Hepburn, that's for sure. If I ran into her at a convenience store, I'd probably find her to be attractive. But I dunno... there's something about her face that's always seemed off to me. Like it's too round or something.
She's very sweaty looking.  Very musty smelling looking.  Too shiny. 

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Re: Passengers
« Reply #30 on: December 11, 2016, 12:42:19 am »
Jennifer Lawrence is not "fairly attractive".  She looks like a ham sandwich.  I'd rather fuсk John Tyler.

She's no Audrey Hepburn, that's for sure. If I ran into her at a convenience store, I'd probably find her to be attractive. But I dunno... there's something about her face that's always seemed off to me. Like it's too round or something.
She's very sweaty looking.  Very musty smelling looking.  Too shiny.

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Caleb Paasche

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Re: Passengers
« Reply #31 on: December 11, 2016, 11:51:25 am »
I mean, Lawrence may be overhyped a bit at this point but that doesn't change the fact that she's charismatic and capable of an incredible performance. She was absolutely deserving of her Oscar and honestly I thought she should've won for American Hustle the next year. Sure it's a bit annoying that Mystique is now kind of the central character in the X-Men franchise but I can't blame her for the studio wanting to capitalize on her popularity. Fact is, I think she's a very good actress and I can see her and Pratt having good chemistry and making for a strong leading pair.

Yeah, she's charismatic in the way Donald Trump is charismatic, I guess. She appeals to really, really stupid people and because she's rich and famous, she makes their behavior seem mainstream and socially acceptable. Plus she's just needlessly mean-spirited. Like when she made fun of that foreign reporter. Or when she made up that bogus story about the Hawaiian rocks or whatever the fuck it was. Or when she called Christian Bale "fatman" after spending a few weeks talking about women and body image. Or when she complained about her life so much that Letterman had to tell her "No whining on the yacht." I'm sorry. I do not see the appeal. Just when you think she's as shallow as it gets, she somehow manages to drain a little more water out of the pool.

Her acting is a more subjective point, I suppose, and I do think she was okay in the first two Hunger Games films and American Hustle. That's about it, though. She certainly hasn't done anything Oscar-worthy. But nowadays, any woman with a little meat on her bones is "making a statement" about body image and they get showered with awards. And yeah, subjectivity, I know... but at the same time, I really can't see the argument for giving Jennifer Lawrence an Oscar any more than I can see the argument for giving one to Leo. I guess it's just a popularity contest at this point, as it likely always has been. They should just start giving out awards for Twitter followers and end this sham of pretending that it actually has something to do with acting talent.

As for your assertion that the movie's premise looks cool... what? Dude, you don't like Alien, Blade Runner, or Children of Men. I have never thought of you as a sci-fi fan, unless you count BVS or The Dark Knight as sci-fi (which I don't). Why in God's name does this appeal to you?
Should've cleared this up in an earlier post, but when I was talking about charisma, I meant strictly on screen. I don't really pay much attention to what actors and actresses do off screen, so I could really care less about her interviews and whatever else. I thought her performances in Silver Linings Playbook and American Hustle were both excellent, and I don't think the Oscar she received had anything to do with her popularity, well, maybe a little but I thought the SLP performance was strong enough to win on its own merit. On an aside, even though Leo's my favorite actor, I did think his Oscar last year was a bit of a makeup for him never winning before (I thought he should've won for Wolf of Wall Street, personally).

Anyway, as for your final point, those three movies don't mean that I don't care for sci-fi. Three of my top 10 all time (Inception, Looper, Source Code) are sci-fi films. I think it's more that the sci-fi films I tend to enjoy have some sort of premise that interests me (notice that each of the three in my top 10 have a clear "hook", while Alien and Blade Runner don't really have that. Children of Men was an outlier, I think). Again, it's not like I'm counting down the days till Passengers' release, but I would say that I'm looking forward to it and expect to have a good time based on the premise and talent involved (I thought The Imitation Game was quite a good film as well).

Believe me, I have no trouble dissociating someone's public life from their art. Clint Eastwood's a senile old geezer and I still love his movies. But that requires there to be something there artistically. Eastwood is a success because regardless of what he supports politically, he'll still be able to make quality films. People like him despite his public life, not because of it. Do you see the difference? Lawrence isn't getting these roles because of her acting talent; she's getting them because people quote her on Facebook and "retweet" her, which in turn is only because she starred in a bunch of shitty YA films with a built-in audience. The Hunger Games would have been a success with or without the presence of Ms. Lawrence onscreen, I promise you that. If Shailene Woodley or Kristen Stewart had played Katniss, I guarantee that they'd be the ones starring in Passengers now.

The point I'm trying to make is that the reasoning behind Lawrence's popularity is her usage in memes and her regular appearance on rag magazine covers-- not her acting ability, which as Braden noted, is hardly anything to heap praise upon. So while I try to separate the person from their art and judge the art independently, I really don't see anything "artistic" about this woman's performances. They're passable. She fills space. She says the lines. She vaguely resembles the character from the book. That's about it.

Anyway, not sure what you mean by the bolded part, but I'd argue that this movie looks like it has more in common with Transformers than it does with any of those films you listed (two of which I like a lot). Nothing about this seems "high-concept" to me, at least from what I've gleaned from the trailers. It's just a dumb action movie in a sci-fi setting. I dunno, it doesn't seem like your kind of thing.
I won't deny that Lawrence's public persona has certainly gained her both fans and fame. It just has nothing to do with why I like her. You can say she's an average actress and that's fine, but personally, I think she's capable of turning in very strong performances when given good material to work with. Whether this movie will supply said material I have no idea (only trailer I saw was whichever one played before my showing of Arrival). However, that doesn't change the fact that her presence in the film does enhance my desire to see it. I mean, if it gets a 30 on RT or whatever then there's little chance I'm going to the theater for it. If it gets a 70 or something though, I'd probably check it out given my relative interest in the premise and talent involved.

I'm gonna explain the bolded piece here, because I know it was confusing. In my opinion, the coolest premise I've ever seen is from In Time, a little seen Andrew Niccol sci-fi piece about a world where time is literally money, meaning the poor die young and the rich can live for as long as they want (trailer at the bottom of my post if you're interested). That kind of premise can basically be summed up in a sentence or two and instantly catches my attention. Similarly, Looper's about a future where time travel is possible and used to assassinate people (with Joe having to escape from himself), Source Code is about the existence of a machine that can be used to replay a moment over and over, Inception about the ability to enter someone's mind and plant an idea. Do you see how those have a sort of "one liner" premise that's instantly intriguing? I guess I just like it when sci-fi puts an interesting spin on the future.

Now, compare that to Alien. I'm not saying it's a death sentence for a film or anything like that, but what's the interesting spin of Alien? People get trapped on a ship with an alien who wants to kill them? Just doesn't excite me, as a look into an alternative future, in the same way. The reason I'm not that excited for Passengers is that it kind of looks to be between the two, not grasping for a really original perspective but also supplying some intrigue in that regard. Hope that made some sense.

In Time trailer:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fdadZ_KrZVw

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Re: Passengers
« Reply #32 on: December 11, 2016, 12:02:42 pm »
I'm gonna explain the bolded piece here, because I know it was confusing. In my opinion, the coolest premise I've ever seen is from In Time, a little seen Andrew Niccol sci-fi piece about a world where time is literally money, meaning the poor die young and the rich can live for as long as they want (trailer at the bottom of my post if you're interested). That kind of premise can basically be summed up in a sentence or two and instantly catches my attention. Similarly, Looper's about a future where time travel is possible and used to assassinate people (with Joe having to escape from himself), Source Code is about the existence of a machine that can be used to replay a moment over and over, Inception about the ability to enter someone's mind and plant an idea. Do you see how those have a sort of "one liner" premise that's instantly intriguing? I guess I just like it when sci-fi puts an interesting spin on the future.
So you prefer high-concept films.  Then just say that.
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John Tyler

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Re: Passengers
« Reply #33 on: December 11, 2016, 12:07:20 pm »
The Long and Troubled History of This Film
Once upon a time, there was a script called Shadow 19, an original sci-fi/action-thriller screenplay written by Jon Spaihts. The project was picked up by Warner Bros. with Keanu Reeves set to star. However, for whatever reason, the film ended up not happening. Reeves, however, liked Spaihts' script so much that when he read his script for Passengers, he not only wanted to star in the film as Jim Preston but also produce it. Brian Kirk was originally attached to direct and the film had a budget of around $35 million. Emily Blunt and Reese Witherspoon were both attached to play Aurora Dunn at different points in time. Then, the film entered development hell for a very long time, less than a decade to be specific, until Sony won an auction to pick up rights to the film in 2014. Reeves was still onboard as a producer through his production company, Company Films, but he was uncredited. Fast & Furious' Neal H. Moritz also came onboard as producer, Morten Tyldum was hired to replace Kirk as director, Lawrence & Pratt were cast, and Passengers was finally made.
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Robert Neville

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Re: Passengers
« Reply #34 on: December 11, 2016, 12:58:43 pm »
I'm gonna explain the bolded piece here, because I know it was confusing. In my opinion, the coolest premise I've ever seen is from In Time, a little seen Andrew Niccol sci-fi piece about a world where time is literally money, meaning the poor die young and the rich can live for as long as they want (trailer at the bottom of my post if you're interested). That kind of premise can basically be summed up in a sentence or two and instantly catches my attention. Similarly, Looper's about a future where time travel is possible and used to assassinate people (with Joe having to escape from himself), Source Code is about the existence of a machine that can be used to replay a moment over and over, Inception about the ability to enter someone's mind and plant an idea. Do you see how those have a sort of "one liner" premise that's instantly intriguing? I guess I just like it when sci-fi puts an interesting spin on the future.
So you prefer high-concept films.  Then just say that.

At the risk of pulverising a dead horse... Caleb sounds like he should be more excited to have a high-concept president whose campaign could be summed up in a sentence or two and who'll put an interesting spin on the immediate future.

And really, "one liner" premises do not, as a rule, "put an interesting spin of the future", so much as they end up dumbing down a particular conflict in the present. That is the reason I still haven't seen In Time in spite of loving Gattaca: the latter still felt grounded, while IT's future glances over so many intermediate obstacles on its way that it's basically unmoored from reality, all in order to crystallise an already well-known and circulated set of messages into something even simpler than the debates you can already read on the subject.

That is also the reason why I don't care much for seeing The Lobster, why I am generally indifferent to many post-apocalyptic premises in films or games, why books like The Circle or The City and the City (and 1984, for that matter) bore me with their premises, etc. The creators simply try to make a point (that usually, many others have already stated before them), and then they immediately plunge the setting from modern-day to a certain point in time, to make it easier for them to convey it by making the world contort around their idea. (Indeed, much like a certain person skipped past many details to go from "third-world-country" to "great again" in his speeches, exaggerating reality to make it fit his message.)

 If you want to do more to prevent fellow citizens from being taken in by such overarching political narratives, it might be helpful to recognise that the same high-concept techniques in speculative narratives are often storytelling crutches, rather than deep insights. The truly challenging future to write is one where a few things have gone forward a lot, some more went backward a lot, but most of the changes have been treacly mediocre and didn't move the needle all that much (at least relative to stuff from the films above), and they were all tied up together, evolving and mutating all along. However, it is also the future we are most likely to end up with, so it's probably high time for fiction to step up.

Diego Tutweiller

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Re: Passengers
« Reply #35 on: December 11, 2016, 01:25:31 pm »
I won't deny that Lawrence's public persona has certainly gained her both fans and fame. It just has nothing to do with why I like her. You can say she's an average actress and that's fine, but personally, I think she's capable of turning in very strong performances when given good material to work with. Whether this movie will supply said material I have no idea (only trailer I saw was whichever one played before my showing of Arrival). However, that doesn't change the fact that her presence in the film does enhance my desire to see it. I mean, if it gets a 30 on RT or whatever then there's little chance I'm going to the theater for it. If it gets a 70 or something though, I'd probably check it out given my relative interest in the premise and talent involved.

I'm gonna explain the bolded piece here, because I know it was confusing. In my opinion, the coolest premise I've ever seen is from In Time, a little seen Andrew Niccol sci-fi piece about a world where time is literally money, meaning the poor die young and the rich can live for as long as they want (trailer at the bottom of my post if you're interested). That kind of premise can basically be summed up in a sentence or two and instantly catches my attention. Similarly, Looper's about a future where time travel is possible and used to assassinate people (with Joe having to escape from himself), Source Code is about the existence of a machine that can be used to replay a moment over and over, Inception about the ability to enter someone's mind and plant an idea. Do you see how those have a sort of "one liner" premise that's instantly intriguing? I guess I just like it when sci-fi puts an interesting spin on the future.

Now, compare that to Alien. I'm not saying it's a death sentence for a film or anything like that, but what's the interesting spin of Alien? People get trapped on a ship with an alien who wants to kill them? Just doesn't excite me, as a look into an alternative future, in the same way. The reason I'm not that excited for Passengers is that it kind of looks to be between the two, not grasping for a really original perspective but also supplying some intrigue in that regard. Hope that made some sense.

Yeah, I've seen In Time, and I liked it fine. But as Neville said, it and movies like it rely on obvious exaggerations of present-day social issues in order to squeeze through their "social commentary," and their scope is limited to only one subject. Alien, meanwhile, has some underlying themes of man vs nature, but it also has an anti-corporate side to it (which I thought you would have enjoyed). Honestly, both it and Blade Runner are more "high-concept" than Passengers seems to be, and they cover a lot more ground than In Time does (or Inception, for that matter). To be fair, I haven't seen Passengers yet, but from what I can gather it's just an action/romance in space. Even if it does try to squeeze a message in, it's entirely possible that it'll be so hamfisted and obvious that it'll threaten to ruin the entire movie even for its target audience. This does not seem high-concept to me at all. Just a star vehicle for Lawrence and Pratt because they're popular this year. I would honestly say that Passengers has less in common with Inception, In Time, Source Code, or Blade Runner than it has with any typical Michael Bay film.

I'll take this opportunity to put in a plug for Star Trek: TOS, a show that not only features a range of well-developed characters, but also tackles multiple social and political issues while still preserving the show's artistic integrity. Honestly, if it can be pitched in one sentence, it might not be that good of a film.

Also, I find it worth noting that Lawrence's character is named "Aurora," which might be worse than "Cypher Raige," "Cade Yeager," and "unobtainium" all put together. Just an observation...

John Tyler

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Re: Passengers
« Reply #36 on: December 11, 2016, 01:31:21 pm »
Also, I find it worth noting that Lawrence's character is named "Aurora," which might be worse than "Cypher Raige," "Cade Yeager," and "unobtainium" all put together. Just an observation...
Except Aurora has been used before for characters in other works (Sleeping Beauty, Terms of Endearment) and is an actual real name.

Diego Tutweiller

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Re: Passengers
« Reply #37 on: December 11, 2016, 01:43:50 pm »
Also, I find it worth noting that Lawrence's character is named "Aurora," which might be worse than "Cypher Raige," "Cade Yeager," and "unobtainium" all put together. Just an observation...
Except Aurora has been used before for characters in other works (Sleeping Beauty, Terms of Endearment) and is an actual real name.

Yeah, but given that an aurora is a light display in the night sky caused by solar wind, I think the context of sci-fi makes this a lot more cringeworthy. Not as bad as Jupiter Jones though, I guess.

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Re: Passengers
« Reply #38 on: December 11, 2016, 02:08:37 pm »
Except Aurora has been used before for characters in other works (Sleeping Beauty, Terms of Endearment) and is an actual real name.

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John Tyler

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Re: Passengers
« Reply #39 on: December 15, 2016, 10:57:53 am »
22% on the Tomatometer so far. Ouch.

And according to the review snippets, the reasons for Jennifer Lawrence's character waking up and Chris Pratt being in love with her are actually very creepy.
« Last Edit: December 15, 2016, 10:59:37 am by John Tyler »

 

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