I recently saw the movies “Arrival” and “Passengers” and thought it would be nice to write thoughtful and in-depth reviews about each of the films in order to explain the symbolism and subtle nuances to those of you who are not as smart as me (like my brothers).
Due to the surprising similarities of the two films and the fact that I can’t really remember most of the details of each of them, though, I have decided to review them both at the same time. This will also conserve some room on Mr. Gore’s Internet.
I should point out that “real” critics who can actually “remember details about movies” seemed to love Arrival and were lukewarm about Passengers. My wife and I liked both movies, although my wife was disappointed with my driving style as we went to the theater. I found my driving to thoughtful and reasoned, a joy to behold! She, on the other hand, found it to be slow and plodding with a lack of direction.
Anyway, Arrival deals with aliens coming to earth, while Passengers revolves around earthlings traveling into space.
On a related note, the new Star Wars movie deals with aliens constantly travelling from one planet to the next just to fight each other.
We also liked this movie a lot, and we both loved the creative decisions made at the snack bar when I ordered popcorn and cookie dough bites.
Also in Arrival, the main character spends a lot of time trying to figure out how to talk to aliens, while in Passengers the main character’s biggest problem is not having anyone to talk to.
In the Star Wars movie, meanwhile, characters from all different planets speak the same language in most cases and have no trouble talking with each other.
This is most likely one benefit of the Empire controlling the galaxy and implementing education reform on all planets in order to break down language barriers.
Both movies starred actors from comic book movies who have previously played roles such as Lois Lane, one of the X-Men, one of the Avengers, one of the Guardians of the Galaxy, the editor of The Daily Planet in the Superman movies, and even a main character from the new Star Wars movie.
It was little weird seeing Lois Lane hanging out with Hawkeye and watching Mystique on a date with Starlord, but I was able to look past these obvious flaws and still enjoy the shows.
Both movies also had plenty of exciting moments and interesting twists that my wife and I enjoyed. Most importantly, both movies also had a few moments of quietness and calm so that I could get up and go to the bathroom without missing too much of the plot.
I did, however, find myself questioning several of the actions of the main characters in the movies. For example, why would Chris Pratt choose to go into outer space like that in the first place? It seemed like a pretty risky trip to sign up for. Also, shouldn’t he be protecting our planet from dinosaurs?
Along the same lines, why was Amy Adams so confident that she would be able to talk with the aliens? Is it from her experience talking with Muppets? And shouldn’t she be dating Ricky Bobby or living as an enchanted princess with Patrick Dempsey? Also, why didn’t I realize before now that she is in so many movies that I like?
Also in both movies, I wondered why a few of the main characters really didn’t do much of anything. In Passengers, one of the characters mainly just jogged and swam a lot while in Arrival one of the genius type characters mainly just carried equipment around. They did a few things, but I really did want to see them do more.
Also, with the whole problem with having no one to talk to in Passengers, why not just talk to the bartender droid more? Wouldn’t he be a good friend? I spend way too much time talking to my dog and cat, so you can bet that if I had a droid and was in space, I would be talking to it all of the time.
I found that Arrival was full of symbolism that made you look inward to examine how you look at life while also making you look outward onto the internet to try to figure out just what happened in the movie. Passengers, meanwhile, is symbolic of what it feels like to ride in the back of a car or van on a long family trip. It has hatred, family, excitement and a few dull moments.
On another related note, the Star Wars movie poses the important question, “If this movie that takes place right before the original Star Wars can be this great, why weren’t the three main prequels any better than they were?”
I would recommend all of three of these movies along with cookie dough bites and a new haircut. Your friends have all asked me to mention it to you.