Passengers is a welcome departure from the usual sci-fi storylines, in that there are no drolling monsters lurking in dark recesses.There are no black holes or time portals to squeak through, into the past or the future . . . and there is no deranged villain with some ultimate weapon, threatening to vaporize them, unless his or her demands are met.
Instead, we are treated to some of the best art direction and set design we have seen in instellar travel in quite some time. The enormous spacecraft, Avalon, wends its way through the galaxy, looking like some fanciful Wankel engine or the blades of a reel mower or grain harvest combine, ever rotating around its forward axis to produce centrifugal gravity.
Inside, 5,000 passengers are sealed in individual capsules that sustain them through the induced sleep needed to preserve them on their 120 year journey to their new home on the habitable planet, Homestead 2 that was chosen colonization by humankind.
There is a plot, however. One of the capsules malfunctions and one of the colonists (Chris Pratt) is aroused from his coma ninety years prematurely, and sets out to explore the ship -- which, as we see, has the ambiance and decor of a first class resort, with huge windows and a swimming pool, that provides one of the more stunning visuals when Jennifer Lawrence goes for a swim just as the artificial gravity goes off-line.
Where did she come from? You'll have to see for yourself. In the meantime, just have a seat at the bar and have a drink in the most beautiful cocktail lounge we're ever seen on a voyage into deep space. -- Thomas Ormsby
(see also my review of Rogue One)