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Preview: Passengers & Rogue One

April 20, 2017

The next Student Activities Double Feature Movie Night is boldly going where no Double Feature Movie Night has gone before, and that is really saying something since it doesn’t even involve Star Trek. Just tap into your sense of adventure, maybe unearth a willingness to get damp pants and/or grass stains, and then come to the Dorm 28 fields on Saturday, April 29. If you can do that, staring at a screen for five hours should be a piece of cake. This is what you will stare at:

  • Passengersstarting at 9 PM
  • Rogue One: A Star Wars Story – starting approx. 11:10 PM

Without digging too deep, you may get the impression that the point of Passengers (released December 21, 2016), at least for the first act or so, is to show everyone Chris Pratt’s butt. Dig a little deeper and you realize Passengers is really about a condition all of humanity may have to confront someday: space loneliness, which, as the movie reveals, is very similar to regular loneliness. This precipitates the natural question any viewer of this movie should ask: If faced with a similar situation as Pratt’s character Jim Preston, would you, or could you, do what he does? Is he a drowning man, as Gus Mancuso (Laurence Fishburne) suggests, or a murderer as Aurora Lane (Jennifer Lawrence) insists?  Beyond this, the movie presents a clear picture of the limits of technology to meet human needs; it offers no lasting, meaningful substitute for human interaction, and in the case of the passengers aboard Starship Avalon, may not be able to offer the safety or protection it espouses. As for the romance of the story, you can judge for yourself whether the movie does an effective job making the case for Aurora and Jim to live happily ever after. Overall, Passengers is just fine, and it should make for some exciting viewing (hopefully) under the stars.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (released December 16, 2016) shows exactly why fans are looking forward to every release in this third phase of the Star Wars franchise. From the moment the classic Star Wars text crawl does not move up the screen, Rogue One sets itself apart from the existing set of movies while still managing to feel like it belongs in the establish movie canon. The visuals and cinematography feel more stately, perhaps less cartoonish, than the other movies, certainly one of the distinguishing touches of newcomer to the series, director Gareth Edwards (who directed the most recent Godzilla movie in 2014). Specifically, there are several scenes that accomplish this in casting the looming shadow of the empire: the presence of star destroyers, whether hovering over Jedha or slowly emerging from the darkness of the Death Star, or the massive presence of Darth Vader in scenes on Mustafar and in pursuit of the Death Star plans aboard the Rebel flagship. This is in contrast to the one word that drives the Rebellion, heard several times throughout the movie, most notably from CGI Princess Leia at its conclusion: hope. Felicity Jones is outstanding as Jyn Erso and K-2SO (voiced by Alan Tudyk) is a perfect addition to the already great list of Star Wars robots.

Just so you know, Passengers is rated PG-13 for “sexuality, nudity, and action/peril”, the “sexuality” and “nudity” of which we will “tone down”. Rogue One, for some reason, is also rated PG-13, but for “extended sequences of sci-fi violence and action”. Maybe there should be something more like PG-10 or PG-11 for movies like Rogue One.

This event is FREE to attend and we will have FREE popcorn and cheap snacks and drinks available. You see how serious we are about this with the all-caps. If you have any questions, email us: studentactivities@liberty.edu



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